Driving in the frigid Alberta winter can sometimes be more than you bargained for. Getting stuck in the snow or stalling out on a remote road can be a scary and serious situation. Having a winter driving kit in your trunk will ensure that you are prepared for any situation. It may seem like a lot but it’s fairly easy to put together quickly. (You can purchase ready-made, well equipped car emergency kits at automotive stores and some big lot stores, or you can make your own.)
First grab an old, small travel bag or backpack that you’re not using any more; even a recyclable shopping bag will do the trick. Here’s what we recommend you carry with you in your trunk or tucked in the backseat:
- Non-perishable food: Energy Bars will do the trick.
- Water Bottle
- Emergency or fleece blanket
- Extra clothes: Having extra socks, gloves, toques, and other winter accessories is important.
- Charged cell phone: You don’t need an extra one, just make sure you never drive without a charged cell phone in the back seat or trunk.
- Winter tools: small shovel, brush and ice scraper (Most of us have these things in our cars anyway in the long Edmonton winter!
- Candle and matches: include a taller can for the candle. This could be a source of heat if you need it.
- Flashlight: Try and find a wind up variety.
- First Aid kit
- Warning light
- Road flares
There are several other larger items you should throw in your trunk in the winter “just in case”: cat litter (for traction), antifreeze or window washing fluid and jumper cables.
You may think that these items aren’t necessary in the city but if you get stranded on a back road or late at night with no help in sight, you’ll be thankful you were prepared.
Also, make sure that your vehicle is winterized and that your spare tire is inflated as well before travelling.