There is much to be said for having a survival kit handy. If you have ever read the book Robinson Crusoe you know that the items he was able to salvage from the wreck of his ship were instrumental to his survivability. Robinson Crusoe is a work of fiction, however that theme runs in any account of any survival situation. The fewer tools you have to make from scratch, the better off you will be.
Since you will be in several situations at different times, it is wise to have several different kinds of kits. Let’s talk about these kits, going from smallest to largest.
The US Army recommends that soldiers have on their person a blowout kit. Depending on who your sergeant is this may be more than a recommendation. In fact it is usually mandatory. The idea is that if the worst-case scenario happens and you find yourself running through bad guy country with nothing but the clothes on your back, a few small items that will fit into one big pocket will help immensely. This principle can be easily applied to civilian life.
If you are a frequent flier like me, a very small kit that will fit into your carry on can give you some real peace of mind. Just remember not to put anything in there that will win you special attention from the fascists in the TSA.
At your home, you have the space for a little more substantial kit. It is wise to keep a backpack with some survival gear handy. One for each member of your family could help even more.
I grew up in the north where winter weather can be severe at times. Even if you are a southerner, it is a good idea to keep a kit in your car with things to help out in the event of bad weather or breakdown.
If you want to go all out, you can equip your vehicle with a trailer hitch and prepare a “survival trailer” that you keep stocked with some good stuff. This will allow you to get out town if you need to and have enough supplies to keep going for a while.
Of course, if you are planning to stay put, you can stock up on all sorts of things and store them in your basement or garage. Even better, if you live on some acres, you can prepare to be wholly self-sufficient for the long-term.
Several firms are now producing various kinds of survival kits that you can buy. The positive to buying a kit is that it is quick and easy. The negative is that it is expensive and may not have exactly what you want. You can always build your own kits. The negative to building your own kit is that it takes a lot of thought and time. The positive to building your own kit is that you will save a lot of money and have exactly the items you want and the items you know how to use.
In future posts we will go into detail on each of these types of kits.