No time like the present to equip your vehicle with an emergency kit

Blair Qualley

With temperatures starting to drop and winter looming, it’s that time of year that many of us start thinking about visiting family and friends.

However, the unpredictable weather we have experienced in recent years and its disruptive impact on the road and highway systems in this region of the province, underscores the need to be prepared before you go.

If you’re considering a road trip, your first visit should be and Access the latest source of road and weather conditions.

Winter tires are a key part of keeping you and others safe on snow and ice. Their importance cannot be overemphasized as they are required on most routes in British Columbia between October 1st and April 30th.

Snow tires with the snowflake symbol are preferred over all-terrain or all-season tires (M&S symbol), as the latter are more likely to slide on the road, as they lose elasticity and grip at temperatures below 7°C, according to Shipping Canada.

While you may never need to use an emergency kit, it cannot be overemphasized having all the key components that will help keep you and your family safe in the event of an accident.

Most drivers probably know what basic supplies they should have on hand in an emergency, but unfortunately, many don’t.

Some basics include first aid essentials, flares, a small tool kit, water and granola bars, a small shovel, and windshield washer fluid, de-icer, and filler pipe antifreeze—but that’s just a starting point.

Remember that communication skills can be crucial in winter driving emergencies. Most of us have a cell phone, but if your battery life is dying, an external charging unit can be crucial.

Take the time to familiarize yourself with your spare tire, check that it’s properly inflated, and that you know how to change the tire if it goes flat.

Emergency agencies also recommend having a bag of cat litter, sand or salt on hand to help create traction under the tire should the wheels spin – and even use paper and pencil to write down instructions, as pens are notoriously unreliable in the cold.

Don’t be the driver trying to respond to an emergency in work clothes. It is also important to have a pair of boots, gloves and a suitable coat.

By following these few simple steps, you can help keep everyone safe on the roads this winter.

Blair Qualey is the President and CEO of the New Car Dealers Association of British Columbia. You can email him at [email protected]

Car Car SUV Truck

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *