A bug out bag, also known as a 72-hour kit or emergency evacuation kit, is a portable collection of supplies and tools that can help you survive for a few days in the event of an emergency. It's called a bug out bag because it's designed to help you "bug out" or evacuate quickly and safely from a disaster or crisis.
There are many different types of emergencies that could necessitate the use of a bug out bag, such as natural disasters (e.g. hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes), man-made disasters (e.g. terrorist attacks, civil unrest), or personal emergencies (e.g. car breakdown, injury). Regardless of the specific type of emergency, a bug out bag can provide you with the essential supplies and tools you need to stay safe and comfortable until you can reach a more secure location or until help arrives.
So, what should you include in your bug out bag? Here is a list of some essential items to consider:
Water: Water is the most important item in any bug out bag. You should include enough water for at least 72 hours (3 days), or more if possible. Consider including water purification tablets or a water filter to make sure you have a safe and reliable source of drinking water.
Food: Non-perishable, high-energy foods are essential for your bug out bag. Look for foods that are easy to transport, store, and prepare, such as protein bars, granola bars, nuts, and jerky. You may also want to include a can opener and a camping stove or fuel tablets if you plan to cook your food.
Shelter: Depending on the specific emergency and your location, you may need to provide your own shelter. Consider including a tent, tarp, or other lightweight and portable shelter options in your bug out bag. You may also want to include a sleeping bag or blanket, especially if you're in a cold climate.
First aid kit: Accidents and injuries can happen at any time, so it's important to have a well-stocked first aid kit in your bug out bag. Include items such as bandages, gauze, antiseptic wipes, pain relievers, and any other prescription medications you may need.
Clothing: Pack enough clothing and footwear to last at least 72 hours. Consider the climate and the specific needs of your location. For example, you may need rain gear or warm clothing depending on the weather. Make sure to include a change of clothes for each day, as well as extra socks and underwear.
Tools: A few basic tools can be very useful in an emergency situation. Consider including a multi-tool, flashlight, whistle, and a compass. You may also want to include a knife, fire starter, and other tools that can be used for self-defense or survival.
Communication: In an emergency, it's important to have a way to communicate with others and get information. Consider including a portable radio, a satellite phone, ham radio or another othering signaling device (e.g. a mirror or flare) in your bug out bag.
Other essentials: There are a few other items that you may want to include in your bug out bag, depending on your specific needs and location. These could include a personal hygiene kit (e.g. toothbrush, toothpaste, soap), cash and important documents (e.g. identification, insurance), and a small supply of any prescription medications you may need.
It's important to note that a bug out bag is not a replacement for a comprehensive emergency preparedness plan.