By Dr. Deanna Lites

DETROIT (WWJ) – The winter weather is officially upon us.

It’s a good time to prepare yourself in the event of a weather related car emergency notes WWJ Health Reporter Dr. Deanna Lites.

You head off to work wearing a suit, but no coat — or dress shoes instead of boots, and the last thing you’re planning is to get stuck in the snow or on the road in bone chilling temperatures.

But it can happen and being proactive can mean the different between the incident being a winter-related inconvenience or result in major injury.

That’s why it’s good to have a winter survival kit in your car.

“What is it going to take if I was going to be out in the exposed elements for a least 4-6 hours?” asks Providence Hospital emergency doctor Steve McGraw.

Things to keep in your car include a blanket, dry-lightweight clothes that you can layer, a hat, gloves, socks and boots.

Hand and foot warmers can also help.

“They last about eight hours and they can go a long way toward protecting you – should you have to walk a good distance or stay in your car for a good amount of time — preventing cold injury to either your feet or your hands,” says McGraw.

Pouches of water and snacks like energy bars are good to have on hand — as is a flashlight, battery cables and emergency flares — should you get stranded in an area where visibility is low or traffic is moving fast.

It’s good to keep everything in one place like in a milk crate or gym bag for easy access.

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