» Five items you'll be glad you kept in the car
Five items you'll be glad you kept in the car
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It can't be avoided: sooner or later, there will come a time when you break down in your car. And while you may have been ahead of the game and organised breakdown cover either as a standalone service or as part of your car insurance policy, you'll also want to make sure you keep certain items in the car for those occasions where you either need to act before the recovery vehicle reaches you or at times where you could perhaps get back up and running quickly on your own if you have the right tools.
It's essential to keep a torch in your car so that you can light your way when carrying out minor repairs to your car at night time. One such job would be changing a flat tyre, presuming you have a reliable jack to hand. If you're in any doubt whatsoever wait for assistance as a poorly fitted tyre could be an accident waiting to happen.
If your car won't start because of a flat battery then the chances are that you'll be able to rectify the situation yourself in a fraction of the time that it would take to wait for a recovery vehicle to arrive. With a set of jump leads to hand you'll be able to ask a neighbour or other friendly face to help you jump start your car in a matter of seconds. It's always worth getting your car checked out by a professional once you're up and running to ensure that you won't encounter the same problem again.
If you're unfortunate enough to break down during the bleak winter months or even become trapped on a particular stretch of road because of extreme wintry weather, then you'll be glad of a number of items. Keep a warm change of clothes and a thick blanket in your car during the winter to protect you from the elements should you get stuck. It's also an idea to keep some high energy food and some bottled water in your vehicle so that you can stay fed and refreshed while you're waiting.
Mobile phone and charger
It's rare to find anybody these days that doesn't take their mobile phone with them wherever they go, but it's still an idea to perhaps keep an old phone in the car switched off and with a full battery so that you can call for assistance in an emergency. If you'd rather just stick to keeping your current mobile in your pocket at all times then make sure you keep an in-car charger in the glove compartment just in case you find yourself out of battery at the most inopportune time.
First aid kit
In the event of an accident you should always contact the authorities and request an ambulance to check over the affected drivers and passengers, even if there aren't any injuries immediately evident. That said, it's also important to keep a first aid kit in your vehicle so that you can attend to cuts or other injuries while you're waiting for the paramedics. Many cars now come complete with a first aid kit but if yours doesn't be sure to pick one up before your next journey.
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