- Question: [Sunday, 29th Teves, 5782]
I have seen many times Lubavitchers placing a Pushka and/or Chitas in their car as a Segula against car accidents? Did the Rebbe ever speak of this matter?
Placing a Siddur, Tehillim, and Tanya [i.e. Chitas], and also a Tzedaka Pushka, inside the car as a Segula for protection is a written directive of the Rebbe which he asked to be publicized. Hence every individual is advised to do so. In one letter, the Rebbe mentions to the asker who was in a car accident that periodically when he stops to rest while driving, he should read from the books.
Explanation: As can be seen from the Rebbe’s interaction on the subject of driving, the Rebbe was worried of the high number of car accidents that occur, and at times even discouraged individuals from getting a drivers license due to this, based on their locality and the dangers of the roads in their area. On one occasion the Rebbe advised an individual to place “in an appropriate area a Siddur, Tehillim, and Tanya, and also a Tzedaka Pushka.” And the Rebbe then concluded his letter by asking the individual to publicize this. Interestingly, the Rebbe he did not make mention of a Chumash, although nonetheless many people simply place a Chitas in their car which also includes Chumash, in addition to the books that the Rebbe mentioned. After the Rebbe asked for this matter to be publicized, Tzach in Israel began a campaign to spread safety directives for drivers, which included the above directive of having the above items in the car.
Sources: See Igros Kodesh 13:394 and Vol. 30 p. 89, printed in Likkutei Sichos 23:402, Shulchan Menachem 1:359; Hiskashrus Gilyon 520 p. 12; Hiskashrus 520:12