If You Must Drive… Five Things To Have In Your Car

Athens, GA- We don’t have to tell you that the roads are questionable and getting worse. Driving is not advised. In case of emergency, however, there are ways to stock your car and be as prepared as possible.

What to HAVE:

1.) Ice scraper (or credit card!). Don’t drive without fully clearing ALL windows- front and back windshield and side windows. A clear patch over your wheel is not sufficient.

2.) Blankets. In case of a car malfunction or accident, you may find yourself in a cold car waiting for help. Blankets are always a good idea to keep in the trunk.

3.) Jumper cables. Always a good idea, but especially in these weather conditions. Winter cold cuts the battery’s energy in half, therefore increases the load on your engine. Most jumper cables have an instruction card or label so you can make sure you’re connecting them the right way.

4.) Weights in your trunk- sand bags, bricks, free weights, cat litter, anything! We suggest sand or cat litter to pour around your tires before driving. They should pick up some of the grit, helping you slide less when you drive.

5.) Flashlight. In a state of emergency, it may be your only way to call for help. Test the batteries regularly.

And top 3 things to DO

1.) Turn your headlights on in broad day light. Keep them clean- dirty lights give less than half of their full brightness. Also remember, use low beams in fog, heavy rain, or snow.

2.) Park on level surfaces and leave the car in gear (standard) or park (automatic) to avoid frozen emergency brake. If it does freeze, drive a short distance in reverse to release it. If your door lock freezes, heat the key with a lighter.

3.) Give a “space pad” when stopping. You could travel three to twelve times further than usual on snow or ice. On a snowy road at 30 mph, figure on at least 15 car lengths to stop (225 feet).


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