When the Weather Outside is Frightful It's Good to be Prepared

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., March 3, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- By many accounts, this winter has been a rollercoaster ride and forecasters predict the unusual weather patterns are not yet over. As many drivers have experienced, winter storms can come on quickly and catch people off guard. To help, Foremost Insurance Group encourages all drivers to be prepared when they travel and have ample supplies on hand in case of an emergency.

Foremost advises that drivers should consider carrying a survival kit in their car that contains:

  • Cell phone
  • Blankets/sleeping bags
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • Knife
  • High calorie, non-perishable food
  • A can and waterproof matches to melt snow for drinking water
  • Sand or non-clumping cat litter
  • Shovel
  • Windshield scraper
  • Tool kit
  • Tow rope
  • Jumper cables
  • Water container
  • Compass
  • Road maps
  • Extra winter clothes and boots

The personal lines insurer also suggests drivers try to keep the vehicle's gas tank full in case the car gets stranded and to keep the fuel line from freezing.

If the road is too snowy to see while driving:

  • Pull off the road and turn on the hazard lights.
  • Stay inside the vehicle. It's easy to become disoriented in the wind and snow. Do not set out on foot unless there is a building in sight where people can take shelter.
  • Run the motor about ten minutes each hour for heat.
  • Open the window a crack to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Make sure the exhaust pipe is not blocked by snow.
  • Exercise frequently to keep blood circulating and to keep warm, but don't overexert.
  • Huddle with other passengers and use coats or blankets to stay warm.
  • In extreme cold, use road maps, seat covers, floor mats, newspapers or extra clothing for covering — anything to provide additional insulation and warmth.
  • Be visible to rescuers by turning on the dome light at night (being careful to not wear down the battery), tying a distress flag (preferably red) to your antenna or window, and raising the hood to indicate trouble after snow stops falling.

If it's necessary to leave the vehicle and proceed on foot once the storm is over, follow the road if possible. If it's necessary to walk across open country, use distant points as landmarks to help maintain a sense of direction. With a little planning and know-how, it's possible to make this winter safer for everyone.

Foremost wants you to be safe in your travels. To learn more about Foremost products or to share feedback, visit www.Foremost.com, our blog at blog.foremost.com, our Facebook page at www.Facebook.com/ForemostInsurance, our Twitter page at www.Twitter.com/Foremost.

A part of the Farmers Insurance Group of Companies®, Foremost Insurance Group ("Foremost") has been a leader in personal lines insurance since 1952. Foremost is headquartered in Caledonia, Michigan. Farmers Insurance Group of Companies is a leading U.S. insurer group of automobiles, homes and small businesses and also provides a wide range of other insurance and financial services products. Farmers Insurance is proud to serve more than 10 million households with more than 20 million individual policies across all 50 states through the efforts of more than 50,000 exclusive and independent agents and nearly 24,000 employees. The Farmers Exchanges are three reciprocal insurers (Farmers Insurance Exchange, Fire Insurance Exchange and Truck Insurance Exchange), including their subsidiaries and affiliates, owned by their policyholders. Farmers Group, Inc., along with its subsidiaries, manages the non-claims insurance operations of the Farmers Exchanges. Farmers Group, Inc. is wholly owned by the Zurich Insurance Group. For more information about Farmers, visit its Web site at www.farmers.com or at www.Facebook.com/FarmersInsurance.

CONTACT: Renee Kolzow 616-956-4669 renee.kolzow@foremost.com

Source:Foremost Insurance Group