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Saturday, January 10, 2015

12 Tips to Follow If You Are Stranded in Your Car in Winter

Natural disasters do not have to be widespread to threaten your safety. A localized snow storm can put you at risk if you are caught up in it.
Here are some before, during and after tips that can improve your chances of survival.

BEFORE --
  • It is especially important to maintain your car during winter months. It is easy to neglect fluid levels, brakes, tire conditions, wipers and minor exhaust and ignition problems when it is too cold to check them. This can be a dangerous mistake to make.
  • Always keep your fuel level above half during winter months in case you are stranded and must idle your engine to stay warm.
  • Even a very basic automobile survival kit is better than nothing. A blanket, or sleeping bag, a flashlight, or 12 hour emergency light sticks, 2 gallons of water and a few energy bars can literally save your life. Light sticks can be placed on top of your car to act as emergency beacons at night. A red bandana can be tied to your antenna, or hung out the driver side window to signal for help.
  • If you will be traveling on the highway in winter, always let someone know your route, when you expect to arrive and then call them when you reach your destination.
DURING --
If you are stranded during a winter emergency take the following measures to increase your chances of survival.
  • Do not pull off on the shoulder of the highway, or on an exit ramp. Each year, many cars are struck from behind by other traffic, or snowplows. If you cannot get to a rest area, or populated exit, pull off the exit ramp and then park on the entrance ramp. Vehicles entering the highway are going much slower than those exiting.
  • Major truck stops are excellent places to shelter from a storm. They provide restaurants, groceries, even private showers, as well as telephones and up-to-date weather bulletins. For the most part, truckers are friendly, courteous and helpful.
  • If you are stranded, stay with your car. It is your best shelter. Do not attempt to walk to safety unless your destination is in sight.
  • As soon as you have pulled off in a safe place, get whatever survival gear you have out of the trunk and into the passenger compartment. If possible, keep water from freezing by placing it near a heater vent, or covering it with a blanket.
  • Run the engine and heater 10 minutes per hour for warmth. Open a window, at least an inch, on the downwind side of the car to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Periodically check your tailpipe to be sure it is not covered with snow. Once the snow has stopped, brush the snow off of the top and rear deck of your car to make it easier to see. Work slowly to avoid perspiring. It is much harder to stay warm when you are wet.
AFTER:
  • Stay with your car until help arrives.
  • If you must leave your car put a note inside the front window telling rescuers where you have gone.
  You can get free up-to-date downloads and information about all areas of Urban Survival at: [http://www.davehardinonline.com]

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