The Reporter covers Miller, Morgan and Camden County in Central Missouri's Lake of the Ozarks and is published once per week on Wednesdays.

 

Published November 21, 2018

Creating a vehicle emergency kit


LAKE OF THE OZARKS - A winter emergency kit should be placed in every vehicle NOW before the snow hits.

Leave it in the vehicle until March or even April. It may seem silly to do so but once stuck you will be grateful to have it. So what if people call you one of them nutty preppers.

And if you think you can call AAA and they will immediately come to help you if you get stuck, think again.

One driver who got stuck in the 2011 blizzard did call AAA and were told it would be at least 45 minutes before they could arrive to pull them out.

Another time a driver who needed a tow truck (very near the off-ramp of Interstate 44) had to wait two hours for the tow truck to come. Can you survive for that long or longer?

The following is a basic list of items that should be included in your emergency kit.

• A cell phone. There is no guarantee that it will have a signal but you can try.
• A full tank of gas before you begin and if needed, stop occasionally and top off the tank.
• Snow shovel (a good one, not some flimsy cheap thing). You may have to shovel snow or break up ice and some of the cheap shovels may be good for snow but useless for ice.
• Scraper/brush (believe it or not, many don’t have these in their vehicles).
• Tire chains (learn how to put them on before the snow hits)
• At least one flashlight with extra batteries.
• Abrasive material, like cat litter, sand, or salt
• Jumper cables
• Flares or reflective triangles
• Brightly colored cloth to signal for help
• Empty water-tight container with candles, matches or lighter,
• Bottled water and a snack or some kind or non-perishable food. You may be stuck for a while.
• Sleeping bags or blankets. You may have to wait for hours in your vehicle and if it can’t be running you’ll welcome the blankets and sleeping bag.
• Ski caps, gloves and mittens. Mittens will keep your hands warmer than gloves but are harder to work with than gloves. Why not have both on hand?
• First-aid supplies
• Tow rope
• Extra clothes and shoes. If you get wet trying to shovel yourself out or you fall in the snow, you will welcome the change of clothes.

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