I keep a bunch of “what if” things in our vehicles. Maybe it started way back when I was in Boy Scouts, where the motto is “Be Prepared” but who knows, it could have started before that. Anyways, I like to be ready to take on any challenge.
In each of our two vehicles, I have always kept several bottles of water, a pen and paper, a flashlight, a pocket knife, small tool kit, duct tape, one quart motor oil, a wool blanket, some toilet paper and some spare change. Recently I’ve beefed up the stash.
One box is a first aid kit which contains a multitude of bandaids. Courtney got this a three pack of these plastic containers from Costco a year or so ago. I stuffed in a bunch of extra things, to include butterfly closures, neosporin, a lighter, one really large bandaid patch, a bunch of Q-Tips, some dental floss and a zip lock baggie with some Benedryl tablets. Most of those are self explanatory, but I want to add that there has been some negative press about Benedryl especially used in younger children. We won’t be using it for your typical seasonal allergies, but rather emergency bee sting induced anaphylactic shock, etc. [Disclaimer: I’m no doctor, so this is not medical advice.]
The top of the picture shows one of each box sealed. The bottom has one of each opened to show the contents. I put a label on the front so we can quickly determine if we need to open the box or not.
A second box contains a deck of cards, another lighter, a few more quarters (I don’t know why I threw those in) and an old deactivated cell phone with the DC car charger. The cards are for passing time if you are stranded somewhere and plan to wait for help. The old phone is for making a 911 call. The FCC has a rule that requires all 911 calls to be put through even if it is from a deactivated cell phone. But, you need some battery power, hence the charger. I’ve never done it, but have received this information from multiple sources online. Spare chargers can be found on eBay for $3.00 with free shipping.
Each of these compact boxes are sealed up with packing tape to keep moisture out. They can be opened with the pocket knife that is kept in the drivers side door pocket.
As you may have read on our blog recently, we’re moving to Colorado soon. A set of tire chains for each vehicle have been found for a bargain at garage sales over the last few months, so we should be ready for the snow.
My truck has a flatbed with toolboxes under the bed, so I also keep a few extra things. The list includes a foldable military surplus shovel, a spare glowplug relay, spare fuel filter, power steering fluid (its a Ford, prone to bad P/S pumps), ropes and straps,along with a few other tools.
I’d hate to think that Courtney could get two flat tires or hit an ice patch and end up in a ditch and be stranded somewhere. I’ve reviewed all of this with her so that she knows that she can be prepared to hunker down and wait it out until help arrives.
So, what am I missing? I know its not perfect and this is a work in progress. Feel free to leave a comment, I’d love to hear what you guys think.