What’s in your trunk?

What’s in your trunk?

For 10 years after I graduated from college, I commuted more than 100 miles a day. Living out in the country is worth it, and I love driving, so it wasn’t a big deal for me. But I learned very early on to keep an emergency kit in the trunk of my car.

You never know when something will go wrong while you’re driving. You could blow a tire. You could run out of gas. Your engine could just stop working. And that’s just mechanical trouble. There are a host of other things that can go wrong too. And that’s just in everyday situations.

If you’re going on a road trip, you definitely want to put an emergency kit together. It’s important to have in case something happens to you, your passengers, your vehicle, or to someone along the way who you happen to encounter.

I thought I’d share what’s in my emergency road kit. Maybe you can pick up some ideas, or maybe I can get some ideas from you! Feel free to share what’s in your kit!


Emergency Kit

This is another pre-packaged kit for your car. It has all sorts of goodies in it, including jumper cables, tire sealant goo, and reflective triangles to set around your car by the side of the road. Other items that may (or may not) be included in a pre-packaged car kit are glass breakers, crank flashlights, utility tools, and rope. All are important pieces that you should have in your car for emergencies.

First Aid Kit

I have one of those pre-packaged kits that you can get at Walmart. It has everything. Bandages, antibiotic ointment, burn cream, painkillers, antiseptic wipes, etc. But then I also make sure I’ve packed my own medications, which I keep extra of, and then I also usually bring a jumbo pack of antacids, extra ibuprofen, and several more bandages. Just in case.


It’s a good idea to keep a warm blanket in your car, even during hot weather. If you’re in a wreck and someone goes into shock, you’ll need a blanket to keep them warm. And if it’s winter and you’re stuck by the side of the road, you’ll appreciate being able to wrap up.
If you don’t have a blanket, then bring a sleeping bag.

Paper Products

I keep a roll of toilet paper and paper towels in my car too. They don’t take up much room, and they’re good to have. Believe me, if you’re stuck by the side of the road without any toilet paper, you’ll be sorry.

Duct Tape

Just get some. It’ll save the universe.


Ponchos are great when it’s raining. They’re a pain to deal with, but they make working outside so much easier. And they’ll keep you dry. So if it’s cold and wet and you have to be out in the elements, you can take the poncho off when you get back in the car and leave the moisture outside.

Ice Scraper

This is a must-have when you’re driving in the winter, and it’s a good-to-have item when you’re driving up north. For those of you down south, overnight in colder states, sometimes frost or ice will form over windshields, and it’s a heck of a pain to get it off. You can use your defroster, but it takes forever. You can try your wipers, but it will also take forever and likely tear your wipers up. Best option: Ice scraper. It lets you get the ice off your windshield, and you get a workout in the process.

Kitty Litter

Another item I carry with me in the wintertime is kitty litter. It’s great for providing traction under your tires if you skid off into a ditch or a snowbank.

Bottled Water

Whether you’re driving in the north or the south, having a supply of water readily available is always a good idea.

What’s in your trunk?

So that’s what’s in my emergency road kit. Have you ever had car trouble and been stuck without supplies? It’s not much fun. If you have a road kit, what’s in yours?

A.C. Williams

Amy Williams left a lucrative career in marketing to write novels about space cowboys, clumsy church secretaries, American samurai, and alternate dimensions. Along the way, she also discovered a passion for teaching other creative professionals how to use technology to make life easier. Through video instruction or one-on-one coaching, she teaches software, blogging, basic graphic design, and many other useful skills that help creative entrepreneurs get stuff done minus the frustration.

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