Survival for up to 72-hours following a disaster evacuation is the preliminary reasoning behind getting a Bug Out Bag (BOB) set up and ready, so the focus is on making evacuation safe and easy, along with the inclusion of basic survival and first aid emergency items.
The most important factors to keep in mind when you are prepping your BOB is to make sure you use up as little space in it as possible, so that you can fit essential products and items such as drinking water and food, as well as make it as light as possible. Make sure that it doesn’t turn into a burden rather than a survival bag in case you need to evacuate promptly. You need to carefully sift through the items of your choice and make sure you take only those which are really essential, and get rid of any unnecessary items and clutter. The best option is to pack tools and items which can serve multiple purposes.
Here is a shortlist of the 10 essential multipurpose survival tools which will make your Bug Out Bag as useful as possible in case of a disaster:
Choose a compact and lightweight and yet versatile and reliable hatchet or tomahawk which you can come in handy in numerous survival situations and for various tasks, such as: chopping wood, self-defense, breaking glass or other, forceful entry, opening containers and others.
This item is cheap and small, but can literally save your life in a dangerous situation, so make sure you pack one of those multitool whistles which include a Firestarter, a dry container or a compass in it.
There is a wide range of options for multitools which can come in handy in desperate situations, but for your bug out bag you should focus mainly on the volume, weight and the actual practicality of the multitool, and namely on which tools you will actually need for survival. The best advice is to stick to the basic ones, such as: strong straight blade, can opener, Firestarter, saw and other tools which will help you survive, rather than picking ones with useful and yet not truly survival related tools.
A reliable tarp can be used for multiple purposes in extraordinary circumstances. You can use it for keeping yourself and your gear dry, for signaling, as well as for a stretcher for injured people.
Make sure you pack some plastic bags in your BOB. They can be used for carrying things, storing water, keeping clothing and fire-starting tools dry and for better organization of other items in your bag.
Do not be tempted to buy a hollow and light, low quality knife for your BOB. The knife is one of the most important survival tools you can have, so make sure that you pack a strong, reliable and high quality full tang survival knife instead. There are a ton of non-so-obvious ways to use it.
It can be used for shelter building, splint securing, waterproofing repairs, injury bandaging, for blister protection and for so many other tasks when you are stuck in an emergency situation away from other tools.
You can use it for protection from the sun, smoke or to keep you cool. You can also filter water with it, use it as a rope replacement, splint tying or as a bandage in case of injury
It takes up very little space, and yet this strong cord can serve multiple purposes, including: building shelters, fasten splints, snare building, incline climbing or descending and for many other purposes.
Even if you are not a woman, you can use sanitary pads or tampons for a wide variety of things, such as: filtering water, bandaging wounds, for tinder as well as for multiple others.
Written by Paul Burton – Paul is the founder of Perfect Blades where he and his team review knives, tools and knife sharpeners