Stay in the Car
A vehicle is easier to find than you!
Avoid Driving in Severe Winter Storms
If you are caught in a storm and your car becomes immobilized, stay in the vehicle and await rescue. Do not attempt to walk from the car unless you can see a definite safe haven at a reasonable distance. Disorientation during blizzard conditions comes rapidly and being lost in the snow is exceedingly dangerous.
- Turn on the vehicle engine for about 10 minutes per hour to provide heat, but always leave a down-wind window open slightly to avoid deadly carbon monoxide poisoning. Make sure the exhaust pipe is clear of snow.
- Exercise occasionally by clapping hands and moving around. Do not remain in one position for long, but avoid over exerting yourself and/or exposure from shoveling or pushing the car.
- Tie a bright-colored cloth high on the vehicle. Leave the dome light on at night as a signal for rescuers.
- If more than one person is in the car, sleep in shifts.
Car Emergency Kit
- Blanket or Sleeping Bag
- Booster Cables and Tools
- Bottled Water
- Canned Fruits and Nuts
- Can Opener
- Extra Clothes
- First Aid Kit
- Matches, Candles and Flashlight
- Necessary Medication
- Rain Gear
- Traction Mats or Chains
Dress to Fit the Season
- Wear loose-fitting, light-weight warm clothing in several layers as trapped air insulates. Layers can be removed to avoid perspiration and subsequent chill.
- Outer garments should be tightly woven, water repellent and hooded.
- Wear a hat. Half your body heat loss occurs from the head.
- Cover your mouth to protect your lungs from extreme cold.
- Mittens worn snug at the wrist are better than gloves.
- Try to stay dry.
Issued when a winter storm has sustained winds or frequent gusts of 35 miles per hour or higher and considerable falling or blowing snow reduces visibility to less than 1/4 mile. Expected to last for at least 3 hours.