An essential key to surviving any disaster situation is the ability to adapt the use of common household items to your benefit. In the spirit of Disaster Preparedness Month we have put together this short list of common household items that could benefit you.
Kitchen Knife – I know, this sounds obvious right? However, the average person doesn’t realize how critical a good knife can be when it comes to survival. Those who do, already own some type bug out bag and a knife is one of its primary contents. For those less prepared, don’t underestimate the importance of a knife.
Honey – Honey, is perhaps, a little less obvious. Honey is nature’s Neosporin. It has an antimicrobial property as well as a wound-healing activity. Honey maintains a moist wound condition, and its high viscosity helps to provide a protective barrier to prevent infection.
Dental Floss – Dental floss has a high enough tensile strength to be ideal for stitches, and provides a great “thread” alternative for other patching applications as well. Dental floss is something that can typically be found in abundance in nearly every household. Don’t underestimate the value and versatility of dental floss.
Coffee Filter – Coffee filters is another item that is common in most households. That coffee filter is also great for water filtration. You can build a rather effective water filter with a 2 liter bottle, coffee filter, sand, and rocks. I realize that the Keurig is tremendously popular, and you may not have a pack of coffee filters. Alternatively, you can use a bandana or old t-shirt as a makeshift filter as well.
Liquor – Pretty much any liquor that is 80 proof or more can be used as a fire accelerant. Contrary to what you have seen in the movies, it is not recommended to pour liquor into an open wound. Pouring alcohol directly into an open wound can slow down the healing process.
Bleach – Bleach can be used to treat water and water is the most critical element to your survival. 8 drops of bleach can treat 1 gallon of water. Without clean drinking water your body simply cannot survive. Tainted water can lead to illness which can further dehydrate you.
Magnifying Glass – A magnifying class can be an extremely effective tool for starting a fire, provided that there is direct sunlight. In the past, I have seen a pair of reading glasses used to ignite kindling.
Metal Clothes Hanger – A metal hanger is a versatile tool. It can be used to unlock vehicle doors among countless other applications. It is strong, pliable, and can be manipulated in many ways. A metal coat hanger may be one of the most versatile tools you didn’t know you had.
This is a short list that doesn’t even scratch the surface of household items that can be
adapted for your survival. I strongly recommend that everyone have an emergency bug out bag with the basic essentials, but depending on the situation resources may be limited. It is critical that you understand how to use what is available to you. With today’s technology and creature comforts basic skills, like reading a map, seem almost obsolete. Ask yourself, could you survive without those comforts and technologies? Can you read an Atlas and roadmaps? More simply put, are you prepared?