While many people don’t talk about them, it may prove to be in your best interest to keep an emergency kit in your vehicle in the event of a break down, especially during the winter months.

Having a car break down on the side of the road is always frustrating, and tempers can flare even higher when the temperature drops during the winter. Keeping certain supplies and equipment in the vehicle can go a long way to making your stop as short as possible.

In the event of getting stuck on the side of the road, there are a few items that serve as the bare necessities.

Jumper cables may be the most important. If a vehicle’s battery should die, having jumper cables on hand could be the deciding factor, as a quick jump start from a friendly stranger could have the vehicle back on the road in no time.

Some other basic items that could be useful include extra blankets, mittens and hats, an ice scraper and snow brush, a first aid kit, a multi-tool, windowsill cleaner, and a jerrycan of gas along with some fresh anti-freeze.

For the extra cold winter days however, there are a few items that can provide an extra leg up.

A bag of sand can help the tires gain some traction. (Cat-litter will work as well)

Another option to help with traction is to keep some tire chains handy.

A collapsible shovel to help clear snow away from the vehicle.

Winter boots will come in handy if one needs to head through deep snow, or if one needs to make a walk to find help. Additionally, if one is broken down in a remote area, a sleeping bag will keep one warm while waiting for assistance.

It is important to share travel plans with friends and family, and to stay with the vehicle in the event of an incident.