Unfortunately it is impossible to predict when a disaster will strike. Therefore, make sure that you are always well prepared. The following prepping tips will help you be ready when SHTF.
Make a Bug-Out Bag
The bug out bag is a portable emergency kit that contains the essential survival materials at least for first three days. It contains a first aid kit, stored food, palatable water, and fire starting tools etc. It is recommended that you build your own bug-out bag as its not only a cheaper alternative to purchasing ready made, but it also allows you to select what it contains.
If you do bug out bag by yourself, you will be able also include any special personal things you might need such as medicine, you can also customize it regarding local environment or even create one for cold and one for hot weather, one for wilderness and another for urban environment etc.
Stock on Non-perishable Food
It is impractical for anyone to stock perishable food as they would spoil after a few days. However, non-perishable food items have a long life-span which makes them ideal for survival periods when food supply is cut, or diminished.
Below are some of the most convenient non-perishable food for any prepper as they not only remain palatable for long, but also because the body can easily digest them without developing any debilitating complications.
- Dried oats
- Dried rice
- Powdered milk
Another good option for emergency food is Meals-Ready-to-Eat (MRE), which are usually cheap when bought in large quantities. Also, it is recommended to acquire a food dehydrator which can dehydrate food, and in the process increase it’s shelf life.
Avoid Expired Food
Some disasters might destroy hospitals and pharmacies, hence cutting access to quality health-care and medical supplies. This means that disaster periods are some of the worst times to be infected with food-borne diseases, most of which are caused by eating expired food.
Therefore, it is important to keep eye on expiry dates. With MRE type of food it is easy as expiry date should be marked on the packages. For non-MRE food items, the you need to check for decomposition, foul smell, and discoloration as all these indicate food rot. Such food must be discarded as its better to eat nothing than eat disease-causing expired food. After discarding the bad food, there is need to re-stock on food supplies.
It is important and practical to wear the right clothes for the season, especially during disasters. This requires that you have a full set of layered clothing available. Make sure that you choose the perfect survival clothing when packing clothing gear. Now you are ready for what ever weather conditions and season. You could have different bug out bag for each season, or you could rotate clothing. I.e. when winter starts, the light clothing packed for summer emergencies are removed and replaced with winter clothing, which would then be replaced by summer clothing when summer comes knocking.
Focus on Placement
It is important that you have your bug-out bag with you everywhere you go. However, this can be impractical, and the best alternative is having it in the following convenient places which have been dubbed the big three: home, car, and office. Most people spend almost all their time in one of these three places. If they are not at home, they are driving to work; and if they are not at home nor at the workplace, they are in their cars. For this reason, it is crucial that you have bug-out bag in all three places.
Read Survival Guides
Knowledge of disaster preparedness and disaster management is critical for surviving. However, most people cannot access all these information in a timely manner, and for this reason having a survival handbook comes in very handy. A good survival handbook, such as SAS Survival Handbook and Preppers Pocket Guide lucidly explain what to do during disasters, and how to proceed during different survival scenarios.
Print Survival Articles And Store Pages On The Folder At Your Bug Out Bag
Print out the most useful articles from the survival websites such as SurvivalGearArmory.com and put those on a folder, which is arrange by topics. This way you could build very detailed own survival hand book based on your own judgement what information is useful. Printing out articles is important also because of in many survival scenarios online communications such as internet is not available – rendering all websites useless.
Have Iodine Solution
Iodine solution, preferably the 10 percent (if not available, then 5 percent) solution, is useful as both a wound disinfectant and as a essential micro-nutrient that helps maintain the proper function of the thyroid gland during periods of starvation. After disasters, you may need to survive in an isolated location for a long period, and because there is no good-quality food, the body can take a beating from consuming low-grade food.
Even so, the thyroid gland needs to be nourished well as it regulates the release of thyroid hormone which functions as a metabolism regulator, and without it, the little food consumed cannot be metabolized properly hence leading to malnutrition. Moreover, iodine can be used to help purify drinking water.
Test The Weigh Of The Bug-out Bag
As mentioned earlier, it is better to build a bug-out bag instead of buying ready made with all the gear. However, some preppers do stuff the bag with lots of materials, and in the end are unable to carry it on their backs. This makes the bag almost useless, as it is meant to be portable, not immobile. For this reason, it is essential to test it, how easy it is carry after all the essentials are put in? If it is too heavy, consider if some items needs to be removed, or replaced by lightweight alternatives.
Have a Self Defense Weapon
Disasters create crisis situations. Most of these are high-stress situations, which are accompanied by breakdown of civility and rule of law. The ensuing chaos can hurt a prepper, especially if he or she is not armed with any defensive tool. For this reason, it is recommended that preppers acquire a self defense weapon, most preferable being a gun, and if this is impractical, a knife, taser, or pepper spray can come in handy as a defensive tool. Be sure to read our article: DIY survival weapons you can make at home. There’s some quite amazing ones such as hand gun and DIY flame thrower!
Have a survival knife
Survival knife is quite essential tool to have in many situations. It can be used not only as a self defense weapon, but you can use it also for hunting, cooking, building, cutting firewood, starting fire, climbing etc. tasks. Invest in high quality survival knife and it will serve years your needs if not tens of years. It could be also a life saver, so don’t buy a cheap one. you need a knife you can trust, which is durable, sharp and perfectly shaped for multiple purposes. Good knife includes also a high quality holster. It’s important that you will be able carry it easily.
Do some Prep Everyday
People fear prepping because they believe its costly. Disaster management experts estimate that an adequate preparing costs thousands of dollars. No doubt, that’s true. However, this would not be the case if you do preparing each day. For instance, you can buy an MRE costing USD5 each day, and place it in the kit. Within a month, you have a considerable collection of prep items. This way you can spread costs over the long time, and there is no need for a big one time investment.
Furthermore, this way your survival food stockpile expires at different dates, allowing you to replace & recycle it in parts. If you buy everything at once, you need also replace everything and once, and in the worst case in the real SHTF situation your whole food stockpile expires at the same day!
Know How To Navigate Without Electronics
It’s essential to know how to use compass and how to find way back if you get lost in survival situations. Especially because you might find yourself in the emergency situation without cell phone, or access to GPS navigator. Do not underestimate the importance of being able to go to the right direction without electronic devices.
Have a Dumb Phone as a Back up phone
Dumb phone is just a very basic cell phone without any fancy smart phone features. It could be also rugged version. Dumb phone is an excellent emergency cell phone, because those are more durable and battery last much longer compared to smart phones.
Have a solar powered battery pack
If you have electronics, such as GPS navigators, smart phones, dumb phones, survival radios, lights, even tablets or laptops etc., you will need power. Solar powered battery pack, or so called power bank, is good as you can load it just exposing solar cells for direct sun light. This way you will have always at least a bit of electricity available for your devices.
Be sure to share this essential prepping tips list with your friends. Be sure to post your questions and comments below! Be prepared! and stay alive!