Winter driving conditions mean even the most careful drivers can end up stranded after an accident. An emergency car kit is the best way to protect you and your passengers, and put your mind at ease while you navigate icy roads. This checklist of essentials makes packing your own kit easy.

1) Jumper Cables

Stalling cars are a common winter problem, so be sure to have a set of jumper cables on hand when a good Samaritan stops to help you out. This set comes with an emergency automobile escape tool.

Jumper Cables 4 Gauge Extra Long with Auto Escape Tool available from Amazon

2) Multi-Functional Emergency Flashlight

This flashlight ticks several boxes on a winter car kit checklist. Not only does it charge with solar power or by hand cranking (no need to stockpile extra batteries), it also has a USB port for emergency cell phone charging, and an AM/FM radio and speaker.

Crank Dynamo Radio, Flashlight, and Charger available from Amazon

3) Emergency Flares

Road flares can help alert passing cars that you need help, while keeping other drivers safe from hazardous road conditions. These ultra-bright flares last 36 hours, and are visible for up to 3000 feet at night.

2 LED Emergency Road Flares available from Amazon

4) Food and Water

Keeping a supply of non-perishable food and bottled water in the car will keep you hydrated and thinking clearly in an emergency situation. Stock up on calorie-dense foods like jerky or protein bars.

5) Emergency Blankets

If you lose heat in your car, things can cool down quickly. An emergency thermal blanket will help you retain up to 90% of your body heat.

Emergency Mylar Thermal Blanket 4-Pack available from Amazon

6) A Shovel and Litter

Pouring cat liter under and around tires will help you gain traction if you’re stuck in snow. A shovel is also a must for winter driving.

SOG Entrenching Tool Folding Shovel available from Amazon

Arm & Hammer 40 Pounds Cat Litter available from Amazon

7) First Aid Kit

A basic first aid kit should be in every car year-round. If you’re injured in an accident, a first aid kit can make all the difference before medical help arrives.

Be Smart Get Prepared 180 Piece First Aid Kit available from Amazon

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