Packing a “bug out bag”, or better known as a “B.O.B.” is essential to preparedness. With the current world situation involving the spread of the COVID-19 virus, we have learned many things. It has made people think more about emergencies and how well prepared they should be, and made others realize how unprepared they actually are.
In the recent past, most people had been living with a comfortable level of certainty about the future without thinking about how best to plan for emergencies. They believed that local, state and federal government would help, protects and save them from anything. Although that may be true on some levels as a result the only true source of assistance and protection is that we provide for ourselves!
No one knows about tomorrow and we only can continue to hope that it will be a better day. We make plans but plans change. The reality is that situations may not come to be because of unexpected events happening.
A bug out bag (B.O.B.) is one of a prepper’s essential tool. BOB is a portable, ready to go emergency kit comprising of items that can help you last for 72 hours or longer) before you are rescued. As a resulta bug out bag is useful in a situation that requires a quick evacuation from an accident or emergency, such as a lock-down, contamination or contagion, natural disaster or fire. Hence a bug out bag is also great for any unexpected situation which requires you to make a quick escape.
In light of the current COVID-19 pandemic people have now realized that a bug out bag is a must! Since the pandemic started, many countries have been put on complete lock-downs. People are now stuck in their homes with movement only being allowed for essential services like food and medical supplies.
The situation caught many people off guard and unprepared. They have now been forced to deal with the situation as it is. The reality is that people are now more aware of the need to plan for emergencies, more than ever based on their experience with the COVID-19 pandemic.
We have compiled a basic guideline on how you can prepare for an emergency by having a bug out bag(BOB) in place.
Does your bug out bag (B.O.B.) need to be made of best quality material? No, that is a common misconception!Consequently building a bug out bag is not about putting together the best products that money can buy. It is about just having a bug out bag!
Your bug out bag (B.O.B.) should be light and portable. You need a bag that you can carry for long distances as you seek out help. An uncomfortable and heavy bag may take a toll on you and will not serve its purpose. It is very common to have multiple bug out bags (B.O.B.) for different situations. A B.O.B. for long term survival will be set up differently than a B.O.B. for your car.
Read our guide on Basic Disaster Preparedness Checklist
Read our guide on Family Emergency Plan
There are items that are basic for a starter bug out bag (BOB) that we have outlined below. Of course you can include additional items based on your personal situation. The idea is to have the items you would need to survive for several days as you wait and hope for help to come. Try to pick items that have multi purposes.
You must have dehydrated foods that only require water for them to be ready for consumption. You can also have high fiber biscuits that will give you the energy required as you wait for help. To select the best food, think about what you can make easily and quickly.
Here are a few of our suggestions for Emergency food. They are perfect for a B.O.B. Personally I like the pouches for a B.O.B. They are easy open and you can make the food directly in the pouch! You can also spread out the pouches in different B.O.B.'s so everyone can carry Emergency food.
I also like the Gluten Free emergency food which I will be listing below. Even if you have specific dietary need many of these emergency foods come in Kosher, Gluten Free, Non-GMO and Vegan
This is important to keep you warm. An emergency situation may cause you to light a fire to fight the cold. Maybe you need to sanitize water or make a meal in your emergency Food pouch? A fire starter is an essential part of every B.O.B. I always have multiple different ways to start a fire in my B.O.B. If one fire starter is wet, broken or lost you will always need another.
This is important for night vision or for signaling others. An emergency can cause loss of electricity. It might force you to walk at night and require illumination. Flashlight, Emergency glow stick and head lamps are always in my Bug out bag B.O.B
- You can have an item such as a knife that acts as your tool or self-defense in case of an attack. You can also use It to cut anything that you may need. A small axe is another staple of a B.O.B. It can be used for chopping, cutting, and protecting as it is a great multipurpose tool.
Ensure that you have a first aid kit to help you in case of an injury. Injuries may be sustained in the emergency event or during the time you will spend waiting for help. Your kit should have basic items such as painkillers, bandages and wound cleaners. A suture kit and blood clotting kit are often overlooked bug out bag items, but are quite essential to surviving a bug out situation. And never forget a splint.
Don’t forget a nice dry set of clothes! Being cold, wet and lost is a bad combination in any situation as a result Hyperthermia can set in quickly. Wet feet can destroy your toes and stop you from moving anywhere. Items such as extra socks, underwear and shirt are important. Include an emergency blanket which is truly a must have.
If you take anything from this remember it makes no difference what amount you spend on a B.O.B therefore It’s all about just having a B.O.B.. Anything will do: light, used, new or old. Look around where you live for items you already have. Above all be creative for and once you start your B.O.B. you will find yourself more prepared than most. The most important piece of advice is start to prepare your B.O.B. today. Don’t wait until after the next emergent situation to regret putting it off. Stay safe everyone.
If you want more information about an emergency kit or what should be in one please visit https://www.ready.gov/kit