Most of what is there can and has helped me out in an emergency; but pretty much all of it has helped someone else, too, when they were facing problems of their own. I have found that helping others in a time of need is a great opportunity to share the message of preparedness and convert them to our way of looking at things.
I need to mention here that this is different than just being prepared to be caught in a blizzard, which I’ve written about previously. While many of the items overlap, there are things in my trunk which have nothing to do with surviving a blizzard. Besides, where I live, a blizzard could only happen if God gave us one by His miraculous power.
So, what sorts of things can be found in my trunk?
1. Tools – While not huge, I have a fairly complete mechanics tool kit in the car. There are always situations where your car or the car of another needs to be repaired.
2. Hose repair kit – While not the best repair kit in the world, this splicing kit will get you back on the road again if you have a hose that pops.
3. Emergency belt kit – Once again, this isn’t the best repair going, but there’s a kit you can buy which allows you to put links together and make a belt of any length. While originally intended for V-belts, it works for multi-V, as well.
4. Water (2 gallons) – Both for drinking and for overheated cars.
5. Radiator seal – For the obvious reason.
6. Oil, brake fluid and power steering fluid – Again, for the obvious reasons.
7. Toilet paper – A life essential. It’s amazing how many times someone is caught in the middle of nowhere, without a bathroom in miles.
8. Paper towels – Not quite as useful as TP, but a close second.
9. Emergency food – High-energy bars, nuts and even some canned goods for emergency meals. If you find someone who is stranded, they’ll be hungry, as well.
10. Blanket – For keeping them warm and dealing with shock. I have an old wool army blanket I use. Being wool, it still retains some insulating value, even when wet.
11. First–aid trauma kit – I carry a rather extensive first-aid kit, with enough in it to take care of fairly serious wounds. Car accidents, as well as accidents in the woods, generally require more than just an adhesive bandage. I have a tourniquet, large bandages and even butterfly closures as part of this kit. The water I carry is pure enough for irrigating a wound.
12. Personal survival kit – My personal (large) EDC kit, which doubles as both a survival kit and a get-home bag, is always in the car. It also contains a number of useful items for everyday needs, ranging from a spork, through a rain poncho to a phone charger.
13. Jumper cables – No matter how sophisticated cars get, these are still needed.
14. Tow strap – For towing a vehicle off the highway or to the nearest service station.
15. Flares and an emergency triangle – It’s always safer to let people know that there’s a reason why you’re pulled over to the side of the road.
16. Rope and bungee cords – For my own use or the use of others.
17. Duct tape – What emergency kit is complete without duct tape?
18. Tire inflator and compressor – Few people’s spare tires actually have enough air in them.
19. A good hydraulic jack – I don’t know about you, but I don’t trust those scissors jacks, and if you’ve never greased them, they’re hard to work with.
20. Fire extinguisher – I haven’t needed this often, but when you need one, you need one.
As you can see, this list is rather extensive. Some of those items are actually kits that are sizeable in and of themselves, containing a number of items. All told, the contents of my trunk give me the capability of dealing with a variety of situations, as well as taking care of myself and my car, should the need arise.
I’d like to reiterate that just about everything in my trunk has been used multiple times. Life just seems to hand us a lot of situations which go beyond what would be considered “normal.” As we all know, being ready for these situations requires going beyond what others do. Carrying along some emergency equipment in my car is a small price to pay, for the security it gives me.
Oh, and, all that equipment fits in the space under the back shelf, leaving the majority of my trunk open for carrying food home from the supermarket or materials home from the hardware store. I can even fold the backseat down and carry lumber home, just by moving one box to the side. So, I’m really not losing anything by carrying all that along with me.
What items would you add to our list? Share your tips in the section below: