While driving into work today, you may have noticed several people stuck in the snow alongside the road or maybe even in the ditch. If you find yourself in a situation like this, it's good to be prepared by knowing exactly what to do.

Now before you immediately call for a tow truck, there are some things that you can attempt on your own, if the situation allows for it.

See Also: Is It Illegal to Drive With a Snow-Covered Vehicle in Michigan?

Here's What to Do if You Get Stuck in the Snow

If your vehicle is stuck in the snow, follow these steps from michign.gov to get it free:

  • Watch for traffic and make sure it is safe to get out of your vehicle.
  • Shovel 2-3 feet clear in a straight line in front of the drive tires. it might be a good idea to keep a small snow shovel in your trunk just in case.
  • Point the wheels straight and turn off your traction control.
  • Using a soft foot on the accelerator, carefully rock the vehicle by first shifting into drive, then reverse, then back to drive, and so on. Get that car rocking.
  • If you have other people with you, ask them to push the vehicle forward while you perform the above rocking maneuver.
  • If you're still stuck, sprinkle sand, kitty litter, or rock salt under the tires for traction. Again, keep one of these items in your vehicle.
  • Before calling a tow truck, the last resort is to try letting a little air out of the tires. This increases the contact area between the tires and the road/snow, giving you more traction. This was a new one to me, never thought about doing this but makes total sense.

Also, stay with your car at all times unless there is a home or business nearby. Don't attempt to walk long distances.


If you're in a situation where all of the above just won't work or it's not safe, call a tow truck or someone that you know can easily pull you out.

Items to Keep in Your Vehicle During the Winter

  • Ice/snow scraper
  • Shovel
  • Sand, litter, or rock salt
  • Blanket
  • Flashlight
  • Phone charger
  • Tow ropes
  • Jumper cables

While it's all pretty much common sense, I bet the only thing that you currently have in your vehicle is an ice scraper.

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