Winter Weather Preparedness

Winter Weather Preparedness

Keeping your car serviced and a full tank of gas is recommended, especially during winter months. To be prepared for travel during unpredictable Illinois winter weather, create a winter weather toolkit.  A winter weather toolkit is important, no matter the length of your trip. Items for a winter weather car kit can be found around the house, or at most discount stores.

Knowing current road conditions is also important. Check Illinois road conditions at

Winter Weather Car Kit

  • First aid kit
  • Cell phone charger
  • Flashlight
  • Water/snacks
  • Ice scraper/snow brush
  • Boots/gloves/warm clothes
  • Jumper cables
  • Emergency flares or reflectors
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • Blanket or sleeping bags
  • Cat litter
  • Fluorescent distress flag and whistle to attract attention
  • Battery powered radio
  • Folding shovel

This list is meant to help create a winter weather car kit and is not all encompassing of everything needed for winter weather preparedness and travel.

Winter Weather Preparedness Tips for Travel: 

  • Always tell someone the route when you leave and the route you are taking.
  • If you get stuck in the snow, stay in your vehicle. Walking in a storm can be very dangerous. A person can become easily lost or exhausted walking even short distances in the snow.
  • Tie a florescent flag (from your kit) or a brightly colored piece of fabric to your car antenna. At night, keep your dome light on, rescue crews can see a small glow at a distance. To keep your car battery from draining, only use emergency flashers when you hear approaching vehicles.
  • Avoid overexertion: shoveling snow or pushing a vehicle is a lot of work, don’t risk injury or a heart attack. Avoid getting hot and sweaty as wet clothing can lose insulation, making you susceptible to hypothermia.
  • Make sure the vehicle is well ventilated. Keep a window cracked while running the engine, and only run the engine 10 minutes every hour. Make sure the exhaust pipe is free of snow.
  • If you are traveling with another person, make sure at least one person is awake at all times to keep watch for help.