A much much quieter day with only 4 requests being responded to; in the form of:

2 x Welfare calls
1 x Shopping trip &
1 x Food box delivered.

A slight change of tack tonight with some information on preparing for driving in winter conditions.

The current lockdown rules state that you must only venture out for essential journeys. If you need to do so for whatever reason; shopping, vaccination, please consider the following winter survival kit checklist for your car in case of a breakdown, accident or weather related incident:

1. Ice scraper and de-icer – You never know when you’ll wake up to an iced over windscreen or come back to a frozen car after a day out. Make sure you always carry an ice-scraper and de-icer so you can effectively defrost your windscreen. If you don’t remove snow and ice properly, you could get 3 points on your licence and a £100 fine. Of course a windscreen cover will help too.

2. Torch and spare batteries – Short days and long nights mean you could be getting in and out of your car in the dark. Keep a torch handy to avoid any trips. If you break down, you’ll need to find a safe place to wait for roadside assistance. A torch will help light your way on a dark verge.

3. A fully charged mobile phone – If you’re delayed because of bad weather (or a weather related incident), it’s a good idea to let your loved ones know. It’ll save them worrying and stop any distracting texts and phone calls coming in while you’re behind the wheel. Just remember not to use a handheld phone while driving. Pull into a safe rest stop to make a call or ask a passenger to do it for you. If you have one, ensure that you have the number of your breakdown service or if applicable local garage.

4. An in-car phone charger or power pack – This will help with above because you don’t want a dead phone battery in an emergency.

5. Sat-nav or a printed route for an unfamiliar journey – The last thing you want is to get lost in the dark on unfamiliar roads. Fiddling with a sat nav could distract you from driving, so planning ahead is the best option.

6. A road atlas – Just in case there are diversions and you don’t have any GPS signal, a road atlas will help you plan a new route, especially if you are unfamiliar with the area.

7. Sunglasses – It might seem strange to put sunglasses on a winter checklist. But actually, the low sun in winter can dazzle drivers and cause glare. Keep your sunnies in the car to make sure your vision isn’t affected.

8. First aid kit – It’s a good idea to keep a well equipped first aid kit in your car. The British Standards Institution has guidelines on what to include like sterile wipes, plasters, dressings and scissors to treat minor wounds. A good kit should have all these.

9. Empty fuel can – You’d be surprised how many breakdowns are caused by running out of fuel. If you keep an empty fuel can in the car, you’ll be able to nip to a filling station for a top up if you do run out. I cannot advocate carrying a full can, but keeping you vehicle, where you can regularly topped will mitigate this, as will of course ensuring that you have enough fuel fir your journey prior to departure.

10. Hi viz Jacket/Vest, spare coat or blanket – These items may well come in handy, especially if you get stuck in a snow drift or are required to exit your vehicle.

I hope this helps and I will reiterate, please only go out if absolute necessary.

Finally, for active volunteers, if you require Hi-viz vests, waterproof jackets and trousers, please let me know on 07395 906220

Take care and Stay safe
Thank you for your continuing support – BCG Committee: Andy, Jim, Linda, Liam, Joseph, Jonathan, Sharon, Kev and Graham 👍🏻