Whether you’re taking off on a long road trip in your new Jeep Cherokee or simply heading down to the grocery store in your Honda Fit, accidents can happen without a warning. To ensure you are always prepared for any emergencies life throws at you, keep a well-stocked first-aid kit handy in your car. Not only are they useful for minor injuries, but they could make all the difference in case of a more serious injury.
While you can buy first-aid kits already packed for you, it is far cheaper and easier to assemble your own kit. Furthermore, you can pick the items you prefer and accommodate for your preferences, rather than going down the generic route. When considering what you need to put in your first-aid kit, remember to not overlook the following.
Knife or Multi-Tool
A sharp utility knife or multi-purpose tool such as the Swiss Army Knife is an essential element of any first-aid kit. From trimming gauze to the right length or freeing a stuck passenger from his or her seatbelt, it can be helpful in a variety of situations. Keep the knife towards the top of your first-aid kit and always make sure to store it in a cover, so as to avoid accidental injuries while looking through the first-aid kit.
This one’s a no-brainer, folks! When it comes to picking medicines to put into your first-aid kit, always remember the basics. Don’t forget to keep handy painkillers and antibiotics along with any other medication you may require. It would be wise to have an emergency supply of any medication you are currently using, in case of a breakdown. Consider having a note describing what each type of medicine is to be used for, especially if you have a large variety in your kit.
Keep plenty of bandages and gauze in your first-aid kit in case of injury. If you are strapped for time and/or space, simply buy a box of quality band aids, ointment and some gauze. This should keep you covered in most situations. Store the gauze and bandages in a separate ziplock bag to keep them from drying out while remaining easily accessible.
Getting into an accident and being stranded in the dark is nobody’s idea of fun, so always keep a flashlight handy. This can save you precious minutes that would have been wasted looking for items in the dark or assessing injuries during an emergency. Better seen than sorry!
Always have clean, bottled water stored in your car. You can use the storage space on the doors or the back of the seats to store your water. If you are stranded for several hours due to an accident or breakdown, make sure to keep yourself hydrated and drink plenty of water. The water can also be used to clean wounds as well as top off your radiator, if needed.
Your car can provide you with warmth when it’s running, but in case of a breakdown, it would be unwise to keep idling your car and spending precious fuel to keep warm. Furthermore, this may not even be possible in case of a serious accident that damages the cabin, making it imperative that you have other sources of warmth available, such as a warm woolen blanket or two.
Another one to add to the list of essential items is food. While you likely won’t be stranded during a blizzard or breakdown for more than a day, keeping a few supplies to fuel yourself definitely wouldn’t hurt. Along with some canned food such as tuna, store some power bars and electrolytic-rich beverages such as Gatorade to keep your energy levels high.
If you’ve gone through this list and are now planning to put together a first-aid kit, remember not to overlook the placement of each item. Put smaller items in more accessible areas around the box, while you should pack larger items in the center. Stand them up side-by-side with the labels visible so you can see them immediately. Ensure that you check the contents of your first-aid kit every month or two, replacing anything that has expired or been used up. Store your kit somewhere that would be accessible even in case of a major accident.
Keep these tips in mind when shopping for your first-aid kit and you should be well-prepared for any unforeseen events that come your way. Got any more items to add to the list? Feel free to leave a comment below.