Many European countries insist drivers must keep some essential safety kit in their cars at all times. In the United Kingdom (UK), there is no such requirement whatsoever, but you can make your life safer, simpler and easier in the event of an emergency or breakdown with a few easy additions to your car’s equipment count.
Punctured tyre is the most common reason for a driver to call for a breakdown service. But you can still help yourself out with some simple kit for the car. However, if it’s not physically possible for you to do it and while not one from your companions is physically able to change a tyre, it’s much safer to call for breakdown assistance more urgently if you are on a motorway.
Also make sure the spare wheel of your car is in good condition and that you have a wheel brace and jack to remove and replace the wheel. You can also bring a small portable compressor pump. Because you can pump up the under-inflated tyres easily and quickly wherever you are with a compressor on board. It would also enable you to check the pressures of your tyres and saves your precious time when you parked your car with a flat tyre at the side of a busy road.
So, find a space in your car for a torch to light because if a puncture is a serious pain, a flat tyre at night is even worse fate. Make sure it’s a powerful torch as a small one might be good only in the house but just a little help it can offer on a wet, dark night. Many torches can also help make your car more visible to other drivers with its flashing function and when positioned behind or in front the car.
In the event of a breakdown, the situation can usually be easily resolved with a quick phone call to whoever you think can be of help. But only if your phone has enough battery charge. A compatible plug-in mobile phone charger is another useful thing to keep in your car. In the glove box, you can also carry a mobile power pack.
Many new cars come with a first aid kit included, but if your car doesn’t have one you can buy them in some supermarkets. Even if it’s only to put a plaster on a cut finger, a first aid kit can make the difference between an emergency and inconvenience.
Another essential thing to keep in the car is a bottle of water especially during the summer. Try to have at least a couple of litres. Don’t rely on a small bottle as this will be handy but think of not just for drinking during a breakdown but also for topping up your radiator if it overheats, to let you drive your car to safety.
Try to keep a spare jumper or jacket in the car to keep you warm in the evening or overnight, because breakdown has a habit of occurring at the most inconvenient time. So, staying warm is a great way of mitigating a bad situation. You can also bring warm clothing or a high visibility vest to let other drivers see you and make you easier to spot by the emergency services.
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