Emergency Car Supplies

Emergency Car Supplies

As you may know, last year I was stuck in some flash flooding and had a bad evening trying to get home from work. Ever since then, I’ve been meaning to get a small kit of emergency car supplies in my car so that I have back up items if (probably when) it happens again.

Emergency Car Supplies


Emergency Car Supplies


This is not meant to be about car breakdowns. Talk to a mechanic on that one. I just call RACQ if needed. This is about being stuck somewhere and dealing with a few small issues (if needed)/getting through the night.


Dry and Food


A poncho.

I actually used to think they were a non critical idea, at least for me. I mean, I live in a humid, sub-tropical environment. Staying dry is needed but it’s not like you freeze and die in a few minutes if you get wet. And then I got caught out last year in the flash flooding. When I was debating how to get from the car to the shopping centre in the middle of a storm (that had been raging for many hours, waiting in the car wasn’t really an option), I ended up just having to do a run for it. And the second I was out from under the sun shades in the car park, I was drenched. Luckily some of the larger shops were still open, so I went to Big W and bought myself a towel to dry off and a hoodie to stay warm. I was only working a casual, low paid job at the time this happened, so even that small expense was actually more than I was able to afford.


Tip: if rain is an issue where you live, don’t keep this kit in your boot!


A muesli bar.

I picked one that’s my favourite brand because it’s high quality, and I picked that specific one because it doesn’t have anything like fruit or chocolate in it, to make it a bit easier to last well in a car. It’s usually just me in the car, so I’ve only put one in there. Adjust as needed for however many people are in your car most commonly!


Portable Phone Charger


Portable phone charger.

For obvious reasons, keeping your phone charged is pretty useful. You need to let people know you are safe, check websites for road closures and so on. I usually have a giant capacity power bank on me if I’m out at work for the day, but of course when I was trapped by flooding, it was running out of power. Because Murphy’s Law is real, people, and it stabs you where it hurts (which I’m assuming is everywhere, never having been stabbed). Ever since then I wanted to make sure I had a fully charged one in the car for emergencies only. My main power bank does maybe 6 or 7 charges of my phone, but the one in my car is just enough for one. Just for emergencies. I’ve set a reminder in my phone every month to keep it charged.


Health Car Kit with sanitiser


Hand sanitiser

Because no one likes germs, ok?


Cotton wool balls/buds.

Generally handy thing to have, especially if you’re likely to slip and fall on wet ground. Cleans the gunk out of wounds.



Tampons, bandaids and paracetamol – all good emergency things to have on you.


Emergency Car Supplies Checklist

  • Portable phone charger
  • Poncho
  • Museli bar
  • Band aids
  • Tampons
  • Hand sanitiser
  • Cotton wool balls/earbuds
  • Paracetamol


Other factors:

Everything is in zip lock bags. I’m no survivalist (or environmentalist, maybe there’s a better solution than disposable bags) but they can be used for rubbish, emergencies etc. They’re handy!

I also usually have my portable medicine kit in my bag anyway, so I haven’t gone too far with first aid.

I’m assuming if you have kids, you’ll need to consider things like nappies, spare clothes, specific food and something to entertain them. Same goes for anyone with critical medications and food allergies.

I usually have notebooks and pens in the car, so I’m covered for stuff to do. I also have towels and those emergency-type glow sticks in my boot.



With the exception of the poncho (from Terry White Chemists, I love their $1 “I Need” range – it’s great) and the portable phone charger (I think I found it in Woolies for $10) I already owned everything in this kid.


$11 for piece of mind. Bargain.


Do yo have any emergency supplies in your car? What would you include?


FYI: I’m looking for a roomie for ProBlogger. If you have a room and need a buddy, drop me an email!


18 Replies to “Emergency Car Supplies”

  1. Gee you are an organised gal! Wise one on the muesli bar.
    PS: If I were interested in Problogger, I’d happily room with you, just because I like ya! Xx. I am not the Problogger type though.

    1. Vanessa Smith says: Reply

      Haha I don’t know about organised – it took me a year to put these few things I mostly already owned into my car! Yay for theoretical roomies 🙂

  2. Because of issues with my stomach (and having experience where someone I was giving a ride to also had issues), I would definitely also pack stomach stuff into the car . This stuff is normally in my bag anyway but it helps to have a backup. A small pack of Buscopan for bloatiness/pain, some Immodium for imminent runny explosions and Zantac for indigestion. They’ve been life savers on long car trips and when the car has been broken down in the middle of nowhere.

    1. Vanessa Smith says: Reply

      Immodium in particular is a great suggestion. Can’t think of a worse place to need it than stuck in a car overnight!

  3. Great post and great ideas. Last year when we were somewhat isolated at home for 4 days with no power I learned the value of portable devices and chargers that can go in cars. The couple of times hub went out, he took the two items of necessity for communication – portable Wifi and portable Iphone charger for in-car charging. That way we always had communication. I have a few items of necessity in my car for potential IBS situations that I have never needed to use but am grateful knowing they are there. Denyse #teamIBOT

    1. Vanessa Smith says: Reply

      Oh yes, all you need is one semi-big storm to really appreciate the portable/car chargers!

  4. Holy crap. I’m hanging out with you in an emergency. I did similar after we had our bushfire scares a few years ago, and have all my supplies organised and ready to go during the high risk period. Nothing like a close scare to make you get organised!

    1. Vanessa Smith says: Reply

      I feel like this is organised…but less so when you considering this happened a year ago to me now haha. I went through an entire wet season before getting around to doing this.

  5. Great idea! I’ve never even thought of doing this and I should, especially with two kids.

    1. Vanessa Smith says: Reply

      I think it’s good to have basic back ups – I’m not a fan of ultra survivalist type stuff but very few dollars can buy relative comfort in an emergency situation and allow you to be rescued, versus feeling the need to risk things to get to safety.

  6. What a great idea! I’d add a single dose of my meds, a bottle of water and one of those cheap but cosy IKEA blankets, just in case!

    1. Vanessa Smith says: Reply

      I keep a single dose of nearly everything on me in my work bag, so I’m usually covered for that. I also have a turkish towel & swimming bag in my car, so they double well for blankets/pillows.

  7. Yes, this is an excellent idea. I had not thought of the muesli bar but mine has got wipes, bandaids, bandages, nappies, panadol, antihistamine, tissues etc. They have come in handy at times and you just never know what impact one of those little items could make x

    1. Vanessa Smith says: Reply

      They are all small but SO useful. I generally always have a box of tissues and pack of baby wipes in my car too. Hmm. I should update this to include all the random crap that lives in my backseat that I can count on haha.

  8. What a great idea!! I have been caught out at home in floods many times now. I have always enough food in my cupboard to last us all a couple of weeks. When the 2011 floods hit, we were stuck in for a fortnight, and were fortunate enough not only to have enough for us, but to help out the neighbours as well. Love this idea though, haven’t been in this situation, but who knows when it could happen.

    1. Vanessa Smith says: Reply

      I’ve usually got a good stock of pasta, so even if we eat that for a few days, pretty covered (if boring!). Luckily in the 2011 floods while most of Brisbane was under, we were pretty bone dry, if an island. Also luckily we have a very high density of supermarkets for a small area (3 Woolies, 2 Coles, 1 IGA, 1 Aldi – and since then there have been one additional each of IGA and Aldi) so while they were all running low, it was easy to get to another shop and see what they had.

  9. Great tips – I would add bandaids. Only because we had a horrendous day where our daughter fell over and was bleeding everywhere & NO – ONE had a bandaid – not even the bloody cafe we were at! I carry them everywhere now x x live and learn mama

  10. I have a first aid kit in the car but that is about it!

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