Before you go to any destination, always inform someone where you are. Let them know where you are going, and about your final destination; provide as many details about your journey as possible. This way if you don’t arrive at your final destination, it will be easier for a search and rescue team to know where to begin finding you.
If you survive a car or plane crash, instead of wandering around aimlessly to try to find other people stay in a stationary position close to the vehicle. It is easier for a search and rescue team to find survivors who stay in a stationary position instead of finding individuals who are wandering around aimlessly. If there is no plane nor vehicle, try to step back and evaluate your terrain while listening for signs of civilization which can give you a clue which way you can go. If you don’t hear anything, try to climb the nearest tree to get a better feel of your environment.
Survival signals can increase your chances of getting saved by boosting your visibility. The first way of doing this is by creating a signal fire in a location that is wide open – such as clearings or hilltops where no trees can disperse the smoke. Use your most combustible material when you hear a plane or helicopter passing overhead. Once you have a fire, add green branches to create thick smoke that will be detectible for 15 seconds when aircraft is passing. The second method you can use to create a survival signal is by using a mirror. Signal mirrors can be seen for many miles even at night. You can use any reflective surface to create this such as a cellphone screen, rear view mirror, or headlight. Aim the reflection by using your hands to hold a peace sign then flash the reflection across your fingers. A third way to do this is by making use of glow sticks – all you need to do is wave them around to try and catch the attention of an incoming boat or airplane.
We can never really tell when disaster is going to strike, or what kind of emergency may arise in the future that will require basic emergency skills. It would be even better if you have already prepared a survival kit that you can take with you anywhere. Analyze all the items you have with you because this inventory can save your life before you are rescued. Each item that you have in your pack can play an important role in survival later on, even if all you have with you is a dull knife. Ideally, your survival pack / outdoor safety kit should contain the following:
A knife will have so many uses, not just in outdoors or while camping but for life in general. Any survival situation will almost always require the use of a knife. If you are always on the go, it’s recommended to have a pocket knife at all times. You never know when you are going to need it to cut branches or prepare food. If you aren’t sure what kind of knife to buy, go for a fixed blade knife since these are more resilient and durable compared to folding knives since they don’t require any mechanical movements. Typical outdoor uses of knives include creating weapons, cutting rope, opening packages, boredom relief, cutting bandages as well as cloth for bandages and many more.
Fire-starter/matches: These are necessary in starting a fire which you will need to cook food and stay warm especially at night. Without a fire, you will become much colder, prone to hypothermia, and will have limited options for food. Matches are inexpensive and can be stored for years at a time. You can start a fire with a battery and a few other simple items. Short-circuit the battery by connecting the positive and negative terminals using a foil (such as those found in candy wrappers), or wire which can create sparks. When you do this, make sure that you already have firewood ready. If you have a hand sanitizer in your first aid kit, it would also make starting a fire much easier since it contains alcohol. Simply spray some of it on leaves and it will catch a fire from the tinder.
Without adequate water, it’s easy to die in the outdoors. Avoid drinking water that has been on the ground for long periods of time such as puddles. Natural sources of clean water are rain, dew, and snow, since these don’t need to be purified in order to be potable. You can soak up dew and rain water by leaving out clothing and then ringing them out. A water container is necessary for storing water to ensure your survival. Camelbacks and other similar water storage systems are great. Water purification tablets are useful in cleaning water and making it suitable for consumption. If you are in the wild and run out of a fresh water source, you may need to rely on a stream or river to stay hydrated or else you can die. Water purification tablets purify water that is otherwise polluted and can provide you with a safe alternative to drinking water in emergency situations.
During nightfall, you will need a flashlight to help illuminate you as you walk, hike, or trek. A flashlight can also provide added lighting as you cook during the night or do other things that require illumination. It helps to light the way and prevent accidents. Ideally it would be best to pack 2 flashlights if you can, and extra batteries for both since you’ll never know when you’ll run out. Glow sticks make a great addition to your lighting solutions for the outdoors. They come in different sizes from 6 up to 10 inches, and depending on the variety can sometimes last up to 12 hours. Even if you already packed flashlights and spare batteries, glow sticks are still ideal for many reasons: they are waterproof and can work well in the rain as well as many different environments, they are non-flammable, they are inexpensive and can last a long time, and can be used as a bracelet by children to help light the way in the dark.
A compass is valuable in helping you find your way to the nearest settlement area for safety. It will be even more effective if you have a map of the area too. These two tools can help you find nearby roads or other signs to find other people or locate civilization. Ropes and cords will come in handy for many ways: building an emergency shelter, tent repair, climbing, attaching miscellaneous gear to your backpack, lashing poles, making splint, creating a fishing line, making a trap for hunting animals, and more. A 550 parachute cord will work just fine, and it also takes up very little space.
Being in nature will rarely inflict injuries but if sometimes especially if you are in a harsh environment, being outdoors can make you more vulnerable to getting hurt. Having a first aid kit handy will simplify everything when it comes to healing injuries. Before you leave for your trip, inspect your first aid kit to make sure that all the equipment inside is clean and that medications aren’t expired. First aid kids should contain: Variety of bandages, adhesive tape, gauze pads, Nitrile exam gloves, CPR face shield, alcohol swabs, cotton swabs, antiseptic medicine, dry-wash pads, scissors, tweezers, safety pins, antacids, antibiotics, anti-inflammatory medicine, and antihistamine.
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