Winter driving essentials
Here in Oregon, we have all kinds of weather depending on which part of the state you live in. We have the coast where the weather is mild. Then we have all the mountain ranges. The conditions can be dangerous from time to time with snow and ice. Here in the Willamette Valley, we get a lot of rain and fog. On occasion, we do get a little snow. Our temperatures are typically mild. Usually with a few days of freezing temperatures every winter. When it does snow, it rarely sticks around for long. On the other side of the cascades in the high desert of central Oregon, they have cold winters. Depending on the year, they can get a lot of snow. They do have much colder temperatures than in the Willamette valley. The cold is offset by beautiful blue skies and sunny days. As you continue farther east it continues the same. In southern Oregon, the weather can be cold and wet. They get snow and fog and just a bit of everything.
When you are out, whether you live in the area or are just visiting, you need to make sure you are prepared for winter weather. We pray that this will not happen to you, but breakdowns due happen. We want you to have what you need in case it takes time for the tow truck to get to you. In the mountains, you may have spotty cell phone coverage. If you happen to be going over one of the passes it could be some time before help arrives. You need to have a few necessities to keep you and your family safe.
- Fuel - Keep your car full when possible. Fill up at half a tank. If you are stuck it allows you to stay warm.
- Roadside emergency assistance kit – this will have flares, road hazard markers, jumper cables – a few of the essentials that could get you back on the road again. It will also keep you safe if you are on the side of the road.
- Flashlight – it gets dark here early and in the mountains, it gets dark even earlier. Having a flashlight not only lets you see where you are at, but it can also help to wave someone down if you need help. A rechargeable one will get you even farther.
- Water – it is important to keep at least 1 bottle of water per person in your car. This also includes your pets. Make sure you have a bottle for them too.
- Blanket – a blanket to keep you warm. In case you run out of fuel in your vehicle. Or if your heater does not work because you cannot start your engine. When my kids were little, this was not a difficult task. Now that they are teenagers, I have a bag in the back with supplies. An emergency blanket is a good option for space-saving.
- Granola bars – it is bad enough to be broken down. To be hungry at the same time is even worse. A few granola bars or something similar that holds for a long time is a great option.
- Tire chains – you need to have these and know how to use them if you are heading over a mountain pass that requires traction devices. If you need to learn how to install them, you can call us and make an appointment. We will teach you how to use them.
I am sure there are other things on the list. It all depends on where you live and where you are going. Give us a call and let us take care of you.
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