Bail-Out Kits, Bug-Out Bags & Emergency Gear for Urban Disasters
|There has been a lot of attention brought to the term Bug-Out Bag on forums and in the media over the years. Just what should go into such a bag and how can you assemble a quality kit yourself?
Essentially, you want a lightweight backpack stowed in yur office or vehicle with enough basic gear to let you handle a short-term emergency ranging from 24-72 hours. If it’s lightweight you are more likely to carry it with you as opposed to a cumbersome hockey duffle bag. During recent disasters, some evacuees had to walk forty miles or more out of their city before supplies were available! This is where a 72-hour Bail-Out Kit comes in to play. With this gear you are able to meet the short-term needs of shelter, water, medical, food and self-protection.
For years, I favored a Shoulder Bag (i.e. Courier bag) but now prefer the comfort of a small backpack instead which doesn’t aggravate old neck and shoulder injuries. Remember, that the point here is “bailing out” and you may be on foot for miles in a real evacuation so think what will work for your body type and age. One of my friends, who has had numerous back surgeries, can no longer rely on a shoulder bag or backpack for his bug-out gear. He now uses a carry-on suitcase with wheels and his evacuation route is planned in accordance with his disability.
My current preferred setup is a hydration pack made by Voodoo Tactical as it’s rugged, spacious and comes with a 2.5 liter water bladder. I would avoid the orange packs with “Survival Gear” stamped on it unless you want those less prepared to know that you are a stocked biped survival store.
I have also seen fishing & camera vests turned into decent survival vests that carry a full a compliment of gear but this should be to augment an existing pack. The idea here is to create a survival kit that will sustain you for 24-72 hours as you flee the disaster stricken area.
All of this gear is in addition to what the survival items already stowed in my vehicle. The latter provides another layer of preparation. I also recommend to students of mine, who commute to work, to have an office kit which will provide an essential 3rd layer in case you are ever stranded away from home.