Even with a brand-new car which has been carefully prepared by the experts at Eden, you can still encounter an unforeseen emergency on the road. It could be an accident involving you or other motorists, or maybe you’ll be unlucky and pick up a stray nail in your tyre.
All of Eden’s new cars will have the peace of mind which comes with having breakdown cover for at least a year included as part of the warranty package, but there are still some items we recommend you carry in your car emergency kit to keep you safe if the worst should happen. All are small enough to fit under the floor in your boot or inside the glovebox and are inexpensive too. But they will make a real difference if you are stuck, or are first on the scene after an accident.
Water – Keeping hydrated is essential for both you and your car. If your radiator or a hose is punctured by a piece of debris, we’d advise you to call your breakdown provider for help, but if you are in an unsafe position then a quick top up of water may be enough to let you limp to somewhere more suitable to wait for help without the car being damaged any further.
A more likely scenario is that your windscreen washer fluid will need to top up though. Eden technicians will check and fill the screenwash at every service, but you are likely to need more in between the workshop visits. If you are far away from a tap on a particularly grimy day, you’ll be glad of a splash more water.
Finally, remember to take enough fluids to keep you hydrated if you break down, especially in warm weather.
Phone charger – We all rely on our phones these days, but in an emergency they really come into their own. In addition to keeping you entertained while you wait for help to arrive, they will also help you find your location and of course call for assistance in the first place.
Most phones also now have a built-in torch to help you attract attention and warn other traffic and some breakdown services even have an app which lets you track how far away the patrol is from you.
But none of this will be any use if your phone’s battery is dead. Put it on charge when you get into the car and make sure you have a suitable lead to give it a top up if you do breakdown.
Warning triangle – Red reflective triangles are a legal requirement in many countries, but they are only advised in the UK. We’d recommend you carry one though, especially as most cars have a dedicated storage spot for them in the boot. They simply unfold and are placed a distance away from your stricken car to warn approaching traffic that there is an obstruction ahead. They are especially crucial if your vehicle is stuck over the crest of a hill or around a bend, and could be a literal lifesaver.
Foil blanket – You might have seen these thin, silver or gold coloured plastic blankets being worn by athletes after marathons. They cost less than £2 from Amazon, eBay or even a ‘pound’ shop and fold down to the size of a birthday card in its envelope. But when unfolded they can be wrapped around someone to keep them warm, dry and protected from the elements. It’s not just the wind, rain and cold either – in summery weather they will provide shelter from the sun. If you need to wait outside of your car for help to arrive, you’ll be really glad you have one of these in your car emergency kit.
First aid kit – This is another item which is a legal requirement in some countries, but not in the UK. But even the most basic first aid kit will be a great help in an emergency. You might want to consider taking some basic lessons in first aid too – organisations such as St John’s Ambulance and the Red Cross run courses both online and in person.