MERRY CHRISTMAS FROM BROTHER AND SISTER THE SURVIVALISTS!
by Irish-7, Editor-at-Large
My wife came up with the idea to make “Crisis Buckets” for our loved ones as Christmas presents. I thought it was a monumental concept in that none all of our family and friends put as much effort into disaster preparation as we do. After all, what greater gift can you bestow upon someone than saving their life? First, let me say that you do not have to believe in all the “Gloom & Doom” prophecies to take a few preparedness measures. It is the prudent thing to do. I am quite sure that Hurricane Sandy is still fresh in everyone’s memory.
There are 4 principles to survival: Food, water, location and protection (from predators or the elements). Remember the Rule Of Threes: Humans can survive UP TO 3 minutes without air, 3 hours in extreme temperatures, 3 days without water and 3 weeks without food. YOUR INDIVIDUAL SITUATION WILL DICTATE THE PRIORITIES IN WHICH PRINCIPLE YOU ADDRESS FIRST.
Survival is more mental than physical. You must have a very strong will to live in order to conquer the obstacles of a crisis/disaster/survival situation. Depending on the severity of the situation, you may be forced to do something that you would never consider during normal day-to-day life. I won’t elaborate too deeply, as this bucket is a Christmas present. Consequently, I don’t want to instill morbid thoughts so that you don’t want to touch it. But, I do want you to consider that the furry little critters you think are so cute, may provide your family with enough nutrition to avoid starvation. On a similar note, your neighbor may look at you in a different light, if you have food and his children are hungry. Some folks crack under stress. Don’t dwell on it! Just keep it in the back of your mind. I hope and pray you never have to face it.
The items inside this container are just a start! They provide BASIC necessities for a SHORT period. The bucket was designed to be that one item that you would grab if you dashed out of the house a few minutes ahead of a storm, or that you yanked out of your car before it was washed away in a mudslide. Extreme? Yes, but I needed a few examples to get my point across. The idea is to put the container just inside your garage door, in a closet near an exit in your home or the trunk of your vehicle. I would encourage you to add a case of water, larger first aid kit, sack full of non-perishable groceries and a firearm to the list of things that you plan on taking with you in event of an emergency.
We would be glad to help you set up a longer term, more substantial preparedness program. Let one of us know what you need help with! In closing, I am compelled to give my strongest recommendation into owning a gun and several boxes of ammunition. There is no more efficient tool for personal protection or procurement of food. Again, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
Love, Irish-7 & Spouse
Listed below (next page) are the contents of the bucket with a brief description of the main use and any additional applications. Many of the individual items were grouped together in ziplock bags. SAVE ALL THE BAGGIES! They are very valuable for water storage, collection food (berries, nuts, etc) and for waterproofing things (cell phone, ammunition, etc).
CRISIS GIFT BUCKET
- LOWES 5 GALLON BUCKET WITH LID – Can also be used to retrieve water, as a chair, step stool or toilet.
- BOTTLED WATER – Depending on the climate and your physical exertion level, you may need 2 gallons of water per person, per day. It is very important to purify water before drinking it. This can be done several ways: Filtering, boiling (at least 1 minute), or with chemicals. Bleach will work in a pinch (1 drop per liter, 2 if cloudy)
- SURVIVAL CANTEEN – Containing: 10 band-aids, whistle/compass, flashlight with AA batteries, space blanket, poncho, D-ring, mini pocket knife and a box of waterproof matches. These things are cool, but the components are not quality. I recommend a sturdier compass, small MAGLITE or similar AA flashlight, spare batteries and a Swiss Army Knife (Huntsman model).
- TOILET PAPER / WET WIPES – Roll of Cottonelle and small pack of generic baby wipes. No explanation required here! Toilet paper makes great tinder for starting fires, too.
- HATCHET – Small, lightweight. You may want to consider a bigger one.
- SURVIVAL KIT – Containing: Waterproof case, band-aids, whistle, candle, flashlight with AA batteries, mini multi tool and a box of waterproof matches. As with the canteen, the contents are handy, but will not take much abuse. A multi-tool from Leatherman, Gerber or Schrade would last much longer.
- SLINGSHOT – Small with a bag of ammo (ball bearings). This can be used for personal protection, or for gathering food. Pocket change works in slingshots, if you run out of ball bearings and there are no pebbles around.
- FOLDING SAW – 9” Locking blade. Great for cutting small trees to make a shelter or branches for firewood or making tools (spears, stakes, etc)
- DROP CLOTH – Plastic. Use for shelter. This was my wife’s idea. I prefer those blue tarps with the grommet holes. You can get them in all sizes and they are relatively cheap.
- LOCK BLADE KNIVES, LIGHTER, WATER PURE TABS, SLINGSHOT CORD- In baggie. A KNIFE IS THE MOST IMPORTANT SURVIVAL TOOL! It can be used to make every other type of tool you may need. You can buy a good, full-tang, fixed blade knife for $20-30.00! A knife can be taped or tied to a sturdy stick or pole and used as a spear (keep predators away or even impale fish).
- TRAVEL KIT – MALE & FEMALE, includes deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrush, soap, etc. Also, a tissue pack and 2 oz bottle of hand sanitizer. All items secured in a ziplock baggie.
- DUCT TAPE – Roll of gray. Endless uses for tape: repair tarp/shelter, clothing, bandage, etc.
- FOOD – GRANOLA BARS, SOS FOOD BAR, FRUIT SNACKS, TRAIL MIX – In survival situations, you want to eat food that will give you energy, high in sugar and fat.
- PONCO – Lightweight. These are only good for a few uses. They only cost a buck. Get some more!
- SPACE BLANKETS & SAS SURVIVAL GUIDE – Like the ponchos, the space blankets are not reusable more than a few times. I recommend storing a few wool blankets near your bucket. Wool retains heat, even when wet. The SAS Survival Guide is a great little manual. Look it over!
- ELECTRICAL TAPE – 1 Roll
- SMALL FIRST AID KIT – Just a few band-aids, antiseptic wipes and some moleskin. As mentioned above, you should own a well-stocked first aid kit with common medications: Ibuprofen/Aspirin (pain, swelling &fever), Imodium (diarrhea), Benadryl (antihistamine), Pepcid Complete (antacid), Sudafed/Claritin/Zyrtec, Dramamine (motion sickness), Bacitracin/Neosporin (antibiotic), Lotrimin/Miconazole/Tolnaftate (antifungal), Hydrocortisone Cream & Ambesol/Oragel (toothache).
- CANDLES & MATCHES – Fire is one of the most important elements in a survival situation. More than just warmth, fire provides protection from animals and bugs, allows for the sterilization of water and food and overall raises moral.
- SURGICAL GLOVES IN A ZIPLOCK BAG – First aid, gutting game and fish, etc.
- HAND/BODY WARMERS – Disposable, 10 hour duration
- PARACHUTE (550) CORD – Use to tie off tarp or poncho, for making tools.