Winters can be harsh in different parts of the world and planning for a trip requires preparation and awareness to make sure the trip goes as expected without any hiccups. Heavy snowfall, severe wind chills, and blocked roadways shouldn’t stop you from experiencing the winter at its best in the midst of gorgeous scenic locations.
Going for trips in winter on your own car or one from car rentals becomes multiple times difficult and dangerous than in summers or any other time of the year. The type of precautions and gear depends on the type of location you visit and the activities you plan to take part in. Below are 5 crucial steps that can help to prepare for unwanted situations on a winter trip.
1. Emergency kit
One of the most important steps in the preparation process is to make an emergency kit that contains necessary supplies which can save lives during dire and unforeseen situation during the trip. The supplies should be packed in a durable and sturdy bag that is waterproof at the same time.
It should at least contain medicines and gauges, fire extinguisher, flares, flashlight with an extra set of batteries, lighter or matchsticks, water reserve, emergency blanket, and booster cables. It is smart to get some readymade packaged food too. If you are stranded in the middle of nowhere, the kit can help you survive till help arrives.
2. Car health status
The mode of transport is a crucial part of the whole trip. Your car should be tuned up and checked for any mild persistent problems especially when the trip is a long drive to somewhere deserted. Car tires are not meant to work perfectly on snow due to less traction and can results in life-threatening accidents at any point of the journey. It is strongly recommended to change tires that provide better traction on snow-covered roads.
Patchy roads and heavy snowfall might require you to bring tire chains without which your car might get stuck without any backup or cellular network. The battery of the car is responsible for the ignition of the engine and all other electronic components of a car. The acid levels should be refilled in case they are low followed by a load test to check the battery status.
3. A well-planned itinerary
A trip includes following certain routes and taking part in activities. For some places, the routes can be tricky or confusing. It is a very good habit to educate yourself on the route to the destination and even alternatives if the main route is blocked or inaccessible.
Staying on the main road is suggested as the probability of dredging ice on main roads is very high. The information should be shared with people close to you in case the worst befalls as they will know exactly how to rescue you. If you are a thrill seeker and love extreme sports like skiing, you should carry standard skiing gear for safety and protection.
4. Weather conditions
Weather is one of the most unpredictable attributes of nature. It can change from complete calm to a tremendous storm in the matter of an hour. You don’t want to face extreme weather in winter or pass through areas that are prone to avalanches.
Since you cannot control the weather, all you can do is to monitor it before you start the trip. Any red flags on news or from any other reliable source mean you have to postpone your trip until the weather clears up to avoid any mishap. Leaving early than required can compensate for the time lost in transit due to bad weather.
5. Preparation for the worst case scenario
A trip during winter should be a memorable one, but we keep hearing news once in a while about rescues and mishaps due to random acts of nature and lack of preparation. It is important to stay fully prepared for the worst that can happen.
Smartphones should be fully charged before leaving. A portable charger can be a lifesaver in case the phone runs out of battery. Informing friends and family regarding the course of action to be followed in case of emergency situations increases your chances of survival by 10 folds.
Winter is the time of celebration and making memories with friends and family. A trip during winter can be a mesmerizing and unforgettable experience irrespective of whether it’s with your car or one from car rentals. Good planning, preparing checklists and presence of mind ensures that you are safe at any point through the journey.