Before proceeding further I would like to say that circumstances can be as unpredictable as there are stars in the sky, so no preparation can be foolproof. However, being prepared can always save you lots of trouble and there are always some fundamental preparations that you can make in order to meet eventualities.
This article on OutdoorSafe Inc rightly say is that no matter what, never leave your car during a snowstorm, because no matter how alarming the situation seems from inside, it cannot be as bad it is outside. So no matter what, stay inside your car. That’s fundamental. Aside from this, you must also prepare a survival kit for yourself (and the others who might be traveling with you) if you are expecting such a situation or if the weather conditions seem a bit ominous.
The above-linked article contains invaluable tips and some of them I am sharing here.
While you are trapped inside your car the most important thing is to keep yourself warm. Wrap yourself properly before you begin to feel very cold because by that time your body has lost lots of precious heat. Especially wrap your feet because they get cold very fast. If you can manage, put your feet on the seat because the area near the floor can get really cold. Whatever warm clothes you have with you, even if they are packed, wrap them around you. Preferably, get inside your sleeping bag before you start feeling too cold. Sit sideways so that you can adjust your feet on the seat and insulate your head against the window because it will be very cold from outside.
In case you are the sole occupant of the car, partition off the back of the car with a blanket and a duct tape so that the heat you are producing doesn’t have to cover a bigger area.
You can also keep running the engine of your vehicle intermittently to keep your interiors warm. Remember that every sort of heat is crucial, so even if you have long burning candles with you, or a small stove, burn them to produce heat but make sure that you don’t set your vehicle on fire in the process. Run the engine of the vehicle for about 10 minutes and then switch it off. You don’t need your car extra warm because the key here is avoiding freezing rather than staying warm. But make sure that while your engine is running, you don’t fall asleep and inhale carbon monoxide accidentally because then this can be more dangerous than the snow outside. You can synchronize your engine-running with the weather broadcast scheduled on the radio so that you can achieve two tasks at the same time.
In case you need to get outside of your vehicle for a while remember to put on your windproof clothing and snow goggles. Also tie a lifeline to yourself and the door handle of your vehicle because the visibility can be really dismal during these circumstances.
Eating can also be crucial because you’ll need it to keep generating heat inside your body. Your survival kit must contain high calorie, non-perishable food, something like carbohydrate food bars.
Don’t avoid drinking water as you need to keep your body hydrated in order to produce heat. For dehydrated body it is difficult to maintain body temperature. But if you don’t have water, don’t eat snow because your body will use up the heat to melt the snow in your mouth. Use the candle or the stove to melt the ice.
Smoking is not advisable when you’re feeling very cold, contrary to what you see in the movies. Smoking reduces blood flow to the skin and this increases the possibilities of frostbite. Also don’t drink alcohol to keep yourself warm. It causes dehydration and it may also affect your judgment.
To make sure that you are well-connected, keep an extra phone battery if possible or at least keep a charger that can be used from your cigarette lighter. Keep all the necessary numbers with you and don’t waste your cell phone surfing the Internet or sending needless chat messages. Remember that when your phone is working, the rescue team can track its signals even if you are unconscious. Of course it may help if you can leave messages on your Twitter and Facebook accounts and describe your situation.
Go to the original article to see the list of things that you should keep at hand while traveling in such conditions.