Snowstorms are typically not a surprise, but their intensity can take weather forecasters by surprise, which means you are also going to be caught off-guard. When you are traveling across a state or even just trying to commute home from work and a snowstorm wreaks havoc, you could find yourself stuck. Not stuck in a snowbank, but stuck on the freeway. Highway closures are very common when the state patrol determines the roadways are just too unsafe for people to use. If there have been a number of wrecks, slide-offs or a single serious accident, the road can be shut down for hours or even overnight.
This is why you must always be prepared to hang out in your car for hours. You never know when the road may close in front of you. There is no turning around or finding another way. You are stuck along with hundreds of others. The freeway because a giant parking lot.
Before you ever leave the house this winter, you should always be prepared. Even if you are just going to work the next town over. Rural highways are often the least maintained, which means you are at an increased risk of finding yourself stranded.
*Pack along a gallon of water. Avoid using milk jugs and either buy a few water bottles to keep in the car or one of the heavy-duty plastic containers.
*Carry energy bars and other snacks like beef jerky, trailmix and so on. If you are traveling with kids, make sure you have their favorite snacks to keep them entertained.
*Toilet paper. Yep, you are going to be using the bathroom along the highway. A little toilet paper will go a long way to making it a little better.
*Books or other entertainment items will be helpful to pass the time. You don’t want to drain the battery on your phone.
*A car charger for your cell phone or tablet. A portable charger is even better so you don’t have to use the car battery.
*A couple of wool blankets will help keep you warm. You won’t be able to have the car idling for hours—you will run out of gas.
*A flashlight will be needed if you need to go to the bathroom or you want to read. Again, you don’t want to run the car battery down by relying on the interior lights.