The first time I heard the term ‘bug-out-bag’ … I wondered how in the heck I missed out on another yet another new handbag?! I mean, after all you are taking about the girl who had just about every designer purse out there at one time or another - all neatly lined up on the top closet shelf like little victory trophies (not tha I used them all mind you - I mostly just gaze at them adoringly - and ... I didn't want to mess them up). But I digress.
Back to bug-out-bags. What I discovered to my great disappointment is a bug-out-bag (or fondly referred to as a 'BOB' or as I like to call it "BOBS" - Bag of Belongings and Supplies) was not what I thought it was. A bug-out-bag is actually a portable bag that contains items a person would need to survive if evacuating their home or business in a disaster situation. Unlike the bag you carry that contains items that you need every day (your hand-bag and brief case) the bug-out-bag is for emergencies.
There is a rule of thumb with this special bag, the bug-out-bag should contain enough supplies for a minimum of seventy-two (72) hours. The rational behind it? Simply put, it could take up to 72 hours for a rescue team to reach you in a disaster. If it were me? I'd count on it being longer - think Katrina. Just sayin'.
So, now that you know that the hottest bag in town is not for glamor but survival, let me share the importance of size and some of the major contents you will want to include in your bag. A well planned out bug-out-bag should include some, if not all, of the below mentioned items and supplies. Notice I said "planned out"? Its not about just shoving a lot of things into a bag.
Cooking utensils, non=perishable foods and water, water tablets for purification, cutlery, dishes, fixed blade knife, battery powered flashlight, radio, self-defense device(s), medications, first-aid kit, a mini crowbar, cash and coins, and a multipurpose tool, just to name a few things.
Now, granted, everyone's bag will be a little different, depending on their specific needs, residential region and circumstances. And don't even start with the "it will be too heavy!" comments! Have you put your or your wife's personal hand-bag on a scale lately? Nuf said.
Now, back to bag packing. Keep in mind the basics needs of survival when deciding what to put in your bag. They are food, water, protection and shelter; with the added fire (warmth) and first-aid. And, a great bag ...uh, bug-out-bag that is. Which leads me to the bag itself.
Your bug-out-bag should be light enough to carry while on foot for long periods of time. It should also be durable and strong. Most people opt for the "back-pack" style bag as the weight of the items in the bag are distributed evenly on your back making it easier to carry (that is, if you consider 50 lbs easy to carry.) Bug-out-bags can be purchased fully assembled or made at home.
Some alternative suggestions for a good bags are canvas duffel bags or carry-on luggage with wheels (I myself would rule-out the wheeled carriers - no matter how appealing – remember the trudge those poor souls in New Orleans had to make after the hurricane? My guess would be the wheels were totally worn down to bare metal in nothing flat.)
Even though it is our nature, especially as women, to want to be the first; and only, to have the newest bag out, in this instance, you may need to swallow your pride and understand that when dealing with a survival situation it is imperative that everyone have a bag of this type. It is also recommendation to have a smaller version bug-out-bag in your car and one at your workplace too.
Lessons learned from previous disasters shows how important it is to be prepared for surviving - living out of your bag for several days - again, if not longer.
So there you have it. Ta dah! - the survival bug-out-bag!
Now I'm sure you can really understand how valuable a great bag is - this time to your survival!
- Survivor Jane
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