Car accidents may not be avoidable but a car accident preparedness kit can give you some peace of mind.

No one wants to ever believe they will be involved in a car accident. Unfortunately, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 6 million car accidents occur in the United States each year. The odds are you will probably be in an accident at some point in your life, so it’s a good idea to be prepared. Besides the obvious things like a cellphone and first aid kit, there are several items you should have on hand in your car in case of an accident.

A car accident preparedness kit, or car "crash kit," is something you can buy or you can make yourself. It should have some basic items in it like a flashlight, blanket, and a first aid kit. You can add different items to your kit depending on the seasons and the area where you live. For example, in winter, you could add an ice scraper, salt, and a small shovel. All kits should have water and shelf-stable food in case you become stranded.

Teddy Bear bandaged

Courtesy Pexels

Here is a detailed list of the items you should have in your car accident preparedness kit:

  • First aid kit
  • Instant ice pack
  • Window punch
  • Reflective safety triangle
  • Pen and paper
  • Plastic poncho
  • Emergency warming blanket
  • Flashlight
  • Bottled water
  • Non-perishable food
  • Cell phone charger

If you are in a car accident, the first thing you should do is turn on your hazard lights and move your car out of traffic. Check for injuries and call 911 if you think you need medical help. Even if the damage is relatively minor, you need to call the police. While you are waiting for help to arrive, exchange insurance and contact information with the other driver. Afterward, remember to replace the items you may have used in your accident kit, and replace any child safety seats that were involved in the accident.

Let us know in the comments if you have other items in your crash kit.