Things to keep in glove box

What Should I Keep in My Glove Box in Case of an Accident?

Most North and South Carolina residents understand car accidents are common, unexpected, and dangerous. In fact, there’s a car accident about every four and a half minutes in South Carolina, and North Carolina collisions injured nearly 115,000 people in a single recent year.

Being prepared for the possibility of an auto accident can help make it easier to deal with the aftermath. One way to be proactive is by keeping your car glove box stocked with critical items in the event of a collision. Another is knowing the name of a good South Carolina personal injury attorney. Stewart Law Offices is here to help after a car accident, especially if injuries prevent you from moving forward with your life. We’ll handle your claim so you can focus on healing.

Essential Paperwork to Keep in Your Car

As a driver, you must carry essential paperwork to prove you’re responsible for your vehicle. By keeping these important documents in your car’s glove box, you’ll ensure they’re readily available in the event of an accident:

  • Vehicle Registration – You’ll need to establish legal ownership of your vehicle in various circumstances, including after an accident. Your vehicle registration papers allow you to prove ownership to law enforcement and anyone involved in the accident. Keeping them in your glove compartment makes this easy.
  • Proof of Insurance – You’ll want to keep current proof of auto insurance coverage in your vehicle to present to law enforcement or another driver after an accident. Be sure to replace it when your policy renews or changes.
  • Vehicle Owner’s Manual – Your car owner’s manual is a handy reference guide for fast fixes to potential car issues. Keep it within reach for a quick consultation to better understand your car.
  • A Small Notebook – You can buy a small notebook that fits easily in your glove compartment in case you need to exchange information with another driver in the event of a car accident. You can jot down the other driver’s vehicle or insurance information and any additional details.

Essential Items for Every Driver

In addition to important documents, you’ll benefit from keeping a few other essential items in your car that you can use in an accident or other emergency. These items include:

  • First Aid Kit – Keep a first aid kit on hand to handle any minor injury. You can buy premade kits or customize your own by loading them with bandages, pain relievers, antiseptic wipes, sterile gauze, and topical antibiotics. Keep your kit in the same place. Replenish your supplies as needed.
  • Emergency Kit – While you should tailor your car emergency kit to your specific needs, there are certain items you’ll want to be sure to include. Keep hand sanitizer, tissues or paper towels, sunscreen, non-perishable protein bars, and any personal hygiene items you frequently use.
  • Important Phone Numbers – Have a list of phone numbers you’ll need to contact in the event of an accident, including emergency contacts, roadside assistance, and Stewart Law Offices. Many of us no longer memorize phone numbers the way we used to. If your cell phone is damaged in an accident or loses its charge, you’ll still have these essential numbers on hand.
  • Cell Phone Charger – Choose a durable, portable phone charger for your car to keep your phone or your passengers’ phones fully charged. It’s convenient for daily use and helps ensure your phone is usable if you’re involved in an accident.
  • Rain Protection – Store an umbrella, rain poncho, or waterproof jacket in your car to remain prepared for unexpected rainy days or emergencies. Many umbrellas and ponchos fold for compact storage, making them convenient additions to your emergency car supplies.

Emergency Car Tools

You also need to prepare yourself for situations in which you’ll need to escape from your car after a bad accident. Invest in quality emergency car tools to keep in your glove compartment. You’ll want to purchase the following items:

  • Emergency Escape Tool – This compact item lets you escape from your car by shattering a window. Research whether a hammer-style or spring-loaded emergency tool is best for your vehicle.
  • Seatbelt Cutter – Though they’re critical safety equipment, seatbelts can also trap you inside the car following an accident and make it challenging to escape. Keep a seatbelt cutter easily accessible in your vehicle. Typical cutting utensils won’t work if you have to slash your seatbelt to escape to safety.

Familiarize yourself with these items and how they work to ensure you’re fully prepared to use them.

Other Items to Keep in Your Trunk

Your trunk is a prime storage space for helpful items you might need in an emergency, such as an accident. They include:

  • Flashlight – A flashlight can be helpful in a variety of circumstances. Pick a bright flashlight with long-lasting batteries that can fully illuminate your vehicle and the roadway in case you need it. Keep some extra batteries in your trunk, too.
  • Spare Tire – If you ever have a flat tire, having a spare, jack, and lug wrench will be helpful to have on hand.
  • Emergency Flares – Emergency flares can alert other motorists and rescue workers in case of an accident. You’ll want to store emergency flares in either their original packaging or a waterproof container to keep them cool and dry. They’ll work best when protected from excessive heat.
  • Jumper Cables – You’ll benefit from keeping jumper cables on hand in the event of a dead battery or if your car breaks down for other reasons. Learn how to use them to jumpstart your car battery or someone else’s.
  • Ice Scraper – While the Carolinas are not known for having a colder climate, you may occasionally need to break out the ice scraper to gently scrape your car windshield and side-view mirrors. You may rarely have to use it, but you’ll be glad to have it on hand if a winter storm hits your area.
  • Water Bottles – Water is important to have in emergency situations, as well as when you’re commuting or running errands. Ensure you always have fresh water, whether you opt for disposable or reusable water bottles.

Keep your trunk organized so you’ll be able to find what you need right away.

Contact an Experienced Car Accident Lawyer for Help After an Accident

If you’ve suffered injuries in a vehicle collision someone else caused, an experienced South Carolina car accident attorney can help you move forward. At Stewart Law Offices, we know how intimidating life can seem after a car crash. Our skilled car accident lawyers bring extensive experience to your case and will help you pursue compensation. Learn how we can help you when you contact us for a free consultation.