The 2017 National Seasonal Preparedness Month is here. September is National Preparedness Month, and that means everyone should take advantage of this awareness campaign to prepare themselves for emergencies at home.
While you might have the emergency kit and a plan for the house, what do you have for your vehicle? Preparedness is not just about being at home and disasters striking. In fact, it is also about what might happen on the road – including a motor vehicle accident.
So, to fully embrace the month, you need to not only consider your house and work but your car too.
Build the Perfect Vehicle Emergency Kit
If you were in an accident or stranded on the side of the road, would your vehicle have the equipment necessary to keep you safe?
You should always have an emergency supply kit in your car. Your car’s package is different from inside your home because it is designed for on-the-go.
Some essentials to keep in your vehicle include:
- First Aid Kit – Have a first aid kit with medications, bandages, cold compresses, and other essentials. If you are involved in an accident, you can use your kit to render aid to passengers and other vehicle occupants or even yourself.
- Water and Food – After an accident, you will not be stranded, but you could still be waiting for emergency personnel. Having water is important, especially if you are in an accident in the middle of summer and must wait in the heat for first responders.
- Roadside Kit – Your roadside kit includes everything you need to stay safe, such as jumper cables, flares, and reflective triangles. If you are involved in an accident in the night, these reflective pieces could ensure other vehicles see your car and move to the side.
- Camera – While you have your smartphone, you should still carry a disposable camera in your vehicle just in case. This allows you take photographs of the accident scene – and is a backup in the event your smartphone is damaged on impact.
Maintain Your Vehicle
Part of preparation involves maintenance. Have your mechanic check your car regularly to ensure it is safe, operational, and ready to tackle the road. Items to review include:
- Antifreeze levels
- Ignition system
- Brakes and brake pads
- Exhaust system
- Fuel and cabin air filters
- Heater and defroster
- Flashing hazard lights
- Oil levels
- Windshield wipers
In addition to a professional inspection, keep your vehicle prepared for any event possible by:
- Always keep your gas tank as full as possible.
- Installing good tires and having them frequently rotated to prevent bald spots or wear that can lead to a dangerous tire blowout.
Contact an Advocate after an Accident
If you or a loved one is involved in a serious accident, you need a lawyer. Regardless of how prepared you are, you still require assistance when things go bad.