FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – With the below freezing temperatures and mass amounts of snow, it is important to prepare your car for traveling in the case you get stranded. WANE 15 spoke with Toni Mayo, the communications director at INDOT gave unique and important tips and tricks to keep yourself safe.

First, PREPARE. Pack your truck with an emergency kit, first-aid kit, extra clothes and blankets, snacks and water, a shovel, snow pick and brush, a tin can furnace, and non-clumping cat litter.

Second, what to know BEFORE YOU GO. Walk around the car and remove all the loose snow and ice from the car. The snow that piles up behind the wheels needs to be removed as well so that the tires on the car are able to properly maneuver. In the case that snow gets stuck in exhaust pipes, remove it. This could cause carbon monoxide poisoning in less than two minutes for those who are inside the car. Lastly, share the route you are taking with someone so they know your direction of travel. In case of an emergency, at least someone will know the way you were traveling. Place all items that you may need in an emergency situation within reach.

Lastly, in the case you are STRANDED what do you do? First and foremost, remain calm and call for help. If someone on the road stops and offers help, don’t be a victim. Crack the window of the car a quarter of an inch and inform the traveler that you have help on the way. Light your tin can furnace and use your floor mats and mylar blankets to keep warm while waiting.

Extra clothes and blankets that are kept in the emergency kit may not just be for you, but also for your family you may be traveling with or other motorists that might be cold or injured.