Winter Prep Profile: Your Car
It’s no secret winter driving conditions can be downright hazardous in Northeast Wisconsin. So, it’s best to play it safe if you plan on hitting the road during any storms this season.
SERVPRO of West Brown County wants you to arrive at your destination safely and that’s why our first piece of advice is to make sure your car is in good condition (if you haven’t already, of course!). That means ensuring everything is working properly from your brakes to your windshield wipers. If you’re not much of a mechanic yourself, it’s a good idea to have a professional check everything out for you, just to be on the safe side!
Now, making sure your vehicle itself is winter-ready is only the first step in seasonal car preparation. This is the time of year you should have an emergency kit in your car at all times. Unsure of what goes in an emergency kit? The American Red Cross has this handy checklist (make sure to bring enough of all of these supplies for every person you’re traveling with):
- Blankets or sleeping bags
- Rain gear and extra sets of clothing like socks, mittens and hats
- Newspapers for insulation
- Plastic bags for sanitation
- Non-perishable food items, like granola bars and nuts
- Bottled water
- A charged cell phone
- A full tank of gas
The Red Cross also advises driving during daylight hours, leaving your headlights on, leaving plenty of space between your car and the other vehicles on the road and taking your time.
If the worst happens and you become stranded during winter weather, the Red Cross asks you to be safe and smart until help arrives. Here are steps you should take:
- Call for help and stay in your car until help arrives.
- Hang a brightly colored cloth on your antenna (preferably red).
- Run the engine occasionally to keep warm. Turn on the engine for about 10 minutes every hour.
- Leave the overhead light on when you have the engine running, in order to be seen.
- Do light exercises to keep your circulation moving.
- If more than one person is in the car, take turns sleeping.
- Huddle together for warmth.
- Drink fluids to avoid dehydration.
- Avoid overexertion. Wait for help instead of shoveling snow or pushing your car.
In Northeast Wisconsin we’re not strangers to the dangers of winter weather. But, that doesn’t mean we’re always prepared for unpredictable conditions. As always, Team SERVPRO of West Brown County asks you to be safe!