With over 60 years of combined experience advocating for car accident victims, our personal injury attorneys have compiled a list of safety essentials that we believe should be a staple in every car. Your safety on the road is extremely important, and these tools can help you be prepared and mitigate risk should you be involved in an accident.

Essential Safety Items For Your Car(s):

1. Seatbelt Cutter

A seatbelt cutter can save your life following an accident. It will quickly slash through a seatbelt – this can prevent you and others in the car from getting trapped in the vehicle if the seat belt buckles get jammed in the accident. This is particularly useful in the event of an overturned car. 

Seatbelt cutters should be kept somewhere within arms reach, such as your center console or glove compartment.

2. Glass Breaker

A glass breaker can help you in a variety of emergency situations, including if you ever need to break out of a car from the inside/windows in order to escape. This can include if your car has been submerged in water or the door gets jammed closed. A corner of the window is generally best to break the glass the fastest, and for bonus points you could watch a short tutorial online to make sure you know how to break the glass in case of an emergency.

Glass/window breakers should also be kept within arms reach, such as in your center console or glove compartment.

3. Important Medical/Emergency Contact Information 

We highly recommend having a list containing your emergency contact information, medical conditions, active medications, and any allergies you may have in case you’re injured and can’t verbally communicate these facts to a first responder. 

Keep the list visible in your center console for easy access.

4. First Aid Kit

First aid kits allow you to treat immediate injuries and can help lessen the impacts of an injury as you wait for the ambulance/first responders to arrive. You may want to get familiar with the items within your kit and know when/how to use them properly.

Ideally, first aid kits should be kept within arms reach, such as the center console, glove compartment, door well, or seat pockets.

5. Reflective Vest and/or Belt

Should you be involved in an accident at night, a high-visibility article of clothing like a reflective vest or belt can help keep you safe, especially should you get stuck on the side of the road. This will also help other drivers see you as well as first responders.

6. Reflective Triangles

If your car breaks down/is not drivable after an accident, reflective triangles can help warn other drivers on the road to be aware. If you’re able to, you should put these up as soon after pulling onto the side of the road as possible. Ideally, wear your reflective gear while doing so.

Reflective triangles should be kept in the passenger box, or on the right side of the vehicle so they’re not facing traffic once you pull your car over to the right side of the road.

7. Blanket

Blankets can keep passengers warm and comfortable on long trips, and they are useful if you happen to get stranded in cold weather after an accident. Blankets can also be helpful in a variety of medical emergencies.

Typically, blankets are stored in the trunk, but you can keep them in your back seat for easier access.

8. Umbrella and Poncho

Should you be involved in an accident during a rainstorm and have to wait outside of your car, having an umbrella or poncho can help you and passengers remain more comfortable while waiting on first responders. You may also find yourself thankful to have these items during storms that don’t involve an emergency!

9. Dash Camera

Video footage can provide strong evidence for you and your legal team during a car accident case, especially if there are debates over fault. Before sending the footage to anyone, it’s a good idea to consult with your car accident attorney.

In South Carolina, dash cameras are permitted but must be mounted on the dashboard, not the windshield or window. Make sure to read up on the laws in your state before installing.

10. Flashlight

Flashlights can be useful for a variety of reasons, such as looking for items that may have fallen, providing light at night, and signaling for help if you need rescuing. It is nearly impossible for rescuers to see you at night without a flashlight. 

For this reason, we recommend keeping flashlights in an easily accessible area, such as the center console. It’s also a good idea to keep these in a sealable, waterproof bag with extra batteries.

11. Multi-tool

A multi-tool, as the name implies, can be helpful in multiple emergency situations. From cutting, to prying and screwing, this tool can be useful to have in your car.

12. Roadside Flares

Road flares can be used to signal for help, provide light, and indicate to other drivers to be aware. If you’re in a very serious emergency and end up stranded, road flares can be used to light a fire or provide smoke.

These should be kept in a sealable, waterproof bag away from heat. 

South Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Helping Those Injured in Collisions

While these safety items are a good starting point when stocking your car(s); unfortunately, you can’t always prevent an accident. If you’ve been injured in a car accident in South Carolina, a personal injury lawyer may be able to help. Our law firm offers free consultations to learn more about your accident and walk you through your options at no cost to you. We are currently accepting clients. For more information, please call us at (803) 888-2200 or contact us online today. Available 24/7.

Award-Winning Law Firm. 60+ Years of Combined Experience.

Disclaimer: The opinions and ideas in this article are for informational purposes only and are not intended as legal advice. Each case is different and must be evaluated based on its own particular facts and merits.