Why California Drivers Need an Emergency Kit

As we and our loved ones drive to their destinations each day, we always hope that no mishaps will occur on the road. Yet statistically, over 3,600 car accident-related deaths were reported in California in 2017. You should know what to do in the event of an emergency, and have critical supplies on-hand whether you or another motorist requires assistance.


The most important phone number to have on speed dial is your insurance company, as well as the number for your auto accident lawyer. In case your phone is damaged in the accident, keeping a list of important numbers above your visor or in your glove compartment ensures you can easily get in touch with them using someone else’s phone as well.

Once you’ve alerted the appropriate authorities, you’ll likely begin the claims process while still at the scene of the accident. But your lawyer should be next in line for a discussion on how best to proceed. Any roadside assistance service numbers, work numbers, and emergency contact numbers can be included in your information list. 

Above all, never admit fault, make sure you get a copy or citation number for the police report, and copy down contact information for others involved in the accident, including witnesses. This means it’s also important to have a pencil or pen and a small notepad in your glove box as well (tip: pencils won’t explode or bleed in the heat).

Search your daily route ahead of time for “iPhone screen repair near me” so you know where to go to get your lifeline to the world back up and running as soon as possible after an accident. Since many insurance companies process claims via phone apps and your phone will be ringing constantly in the immediate aftermath, phone repair will be almost as important as getting your car running again.

It’s best to have your lawyer work with both insurance agencies as soon as possible to ensure your claim has the best chance of approval. Medical and repair expenses from an auto accident can have a major impact on one’s finances. Don’t risk making statements or signing documents on the scene or immediately afterwards that could potentially forfeit your right to compensation.

Roadside injuries

You or a loved one could find themselves stranded on the side of a highway after an accident while waiting for police, fire, ambulance, or towing services. There are major two kinds of kits available: a first aid kit typically addresses minor injuries, while a trauma kit should include a tourniquet, blood-clotting agents, and pressure dressings.

Additional items can help prevent secondary issues from arising after the accident like heat exhaustion, dehydration, and shock. Be prepared for both daytime and nighttime incidents with things like blankets, a compact umbrella, an oversized parka or pullover, and dehydrated food or jerky.

You should bring bottled water along on every trip, but don’t leave plastic water bottles in your vehicle for long, as repeated heating and cooling cycles in your car can cause leaching.

Roadside safety

Double check that your spare tire and jack components are in place and in working order. Flares, a reflective triangle, and even a lightweight reflective vest can help increase visibility around the crash site while other motorists navigate passage through the scene. Paper funnels, a small bag of cat litter, and duct tape come in handy for a variety of situations.

Probably one of the most overlooked skills that nearly everyone will need to do eventually, is to learn how to jump start a car. Keeping jumper cables in your car isn’t just smart, it’s pretty much a necessity. I can’t even count on one hand how many times I needed cables and didn’t have them. And just about everyone I ask for help doesn’t either! It constantly amazes me just how unprepared people (including me!) are in this scenario.

Best practice is to hope for the best and prepare for the worst. Having a well-stocked emergency kit in your vehicle can prevent small accidents from snowballing into more critical scenarios, and it can even save lives.

Author: Brandon Park