Friday, December 24, 2010

Winter Driving: Emergency Supplies

Tis the season for travel, and with it the possibility of breakdown due to blizzard, white-out or flooding. Before you venture out on the roads for the white season, make sure you have satisfactory emergency gear in your vehicle and know how to use it:

Basic repair tools: Ice scraper, lug wrench, jumper cables, Jack, fire extinguisher, tow strap or chain, screwdrivers, ratchet set, duct tape, shovel, can tire inflator, sand or ice melt, kitty litter, pocketknife, folding saw, hand ax.
Signaling: safety flares, distress flag or brightly colored bandana, signal mirror or whistle.
Clothing and shelter: blankets or sleeping bag, tarp or tent, and spare clothing: hats, gloves, socks, winter boots, sunglasses.
Food and water: pot or cook kit, candy or energy bars, MREs, freeze-dried food, gallon of water, water bottles, water treatment tablets or filter,
First aid and hygiene: First aid kit, toilet paper or tissue, hand sanitizer, waste disposal kit.
Communication: FRS radio, cell phone, hand crank or solar radio w/cell phone charger.
Lighting: shaker or wind-up flashlight, lantern, headlamp.
In Glove Box: Personal survival kit.
Emergency heat: coffee can stove - small coffee or fruit can, roll of toilet paper (no scented) inside the can, square aluminum pie pan, matches or lighter, and a bottle of 70% rubbing alcohol poured over the TP, and lit - will heat a car interior for hours. Place heater on pie pan on passenger side floor. Crack a window for fresh air. *DO NOT LEAVE UNATTENDED.

Preparing your car for winter:

1. Check + winterize all systems: tires, radiator, heater, battery and wiper blades.
2. Install snow tires or carry chains.
3. Keep at minimum half tank of gas.
4. Carry emergency supplies, see above.
5. Insure good working conditions.

Stay healthy, mind-body-spirit! -Z

Monday, December 13, 2010

Blizzard Test-dumbie

For the unprepared, your automobile can be a treasure trove of survival resources. With a little imagination and know-how the tools you need to survive are right under your dash…

Improvised vehicle resources:
Cigarette lighter: fire starting
Horn: signaling (in bursts of 3)
Side or rearview mirror: visual signaling
CD’s: visual signaling
Tires or rubber floor mats: can be burned for signal fire producing a thick black smoke creating contrast with snow covered surroundings.
Engine fluids: smeared on rag or cloth and used as fire starter.
Hub caps: visual signaling, shovel, water bowl or dew catch.
Headlights: nighttime visual signaling, inner parabolic as fire starter.
Upholstery, seat covers and interior carpeting: clothing, insulation or in shelter construction.

Stay healthy, mind-body-spirit! -Z

50+ improvised uses for the common Bandana

First Aid:
1. Sling
2. Compress
3. Tourniquet
4. Washcloth
5. Pressure bandage tie
6. Finger splint
7. Splint tie
8. Poultice
9. Ankle wrap
10. Wrist brace
11. Hot pack
12. Cold pack
13. Towel
14. Toilet paper
15. Feminine hygiene
16. Toothbrush
17. Fire starter
18. Fire windscreen
19. Hat
20. Scarf
21. Sun protector
22. Sunglasses
23. Dust mask
24. Headband
25. Face mask
26. Earmuffs
27. Hand wraps
28. Belt
29. Socks
30. Shoelaces
31. Footwear insole
32. Knee pad
33. Hair tie
34. Apron
35. Bib
36. Handkerchief
37. Shade
38. Earplugs
39. Blindfold
40. Strainer
41. Dew collector
42. Sponge
43. Tea bag to create infusions with wild herbs
44. Wick clarifier
45. Signal flag
46. Ground signal panel
47. Trail marker
48. Pot holder
49. Cordage
50. Sling pouch
51. Net
52. Lashing
53. Lamp wick
54. Bug cover
55. Food wrap
56. Plate
57. Pack
58. Stuff sack
59. Flashlight cover
60. Bear bag
61. Weapon

Stay healthy, mind-body-spirit! -Z