01 March 2013

Advice to Travelers

I had the luxury of being the last one off the plane the other day and decided to make use of the waiting time by talking to the Flight Attendants. Normally, this would be a short conversation but apparently the topic was intriguing. Preparedness.

It started when one of them mentioned an unintended overnight stay due to a storm front that recently came through. She also mentioned how several of them didn't bring a bag because this was to be a turn around and their last flight of the day. This caused them to dart for the local drug store for contact solutions, toothbrushes and toothpaste.

There were several comments on what would happen to the flip flop wearers if there had to be a water landing. The clencher was how all the attendants got together and decided that it would never happen again and they would each have an EveryDay Carry bag. Genius.

Understand that this comes on the heels of the Carnival Cruise ship, Triumph's, fiasco and people mentioning there are some things you cannot be prepared for.

I kind of disagree.

I carry an EDC almost everywhere, yes, almost everywhere I go. When I travel and I have to take a laptop with me, I rig my bag to fit within regulatory guidelines. Read TSA. I will give you a list of what's in my bag but you will have to read on before I do.

I responded to the cruise line's retort with one of my own: "MRE, toilet paper and purification tablets or straw would have been a great start." To which they replied, "I didn't think of those items".

As for the airline discussion, we discussed what the attendants carry and did a comparison of what I carry. I think we all had things to add to our bag we never thought about. Pretzels and peanuts only go so far. They wanted to hang out after the flight for more notes, but I was ready to get home so I declined.

NOTE: I am by no means great, or even good at preparedness and I make no claims to be. I am learning like the rest of you. I look for information and learn where I have gaps. I am amazed at the willingness of others to learn. I like it.

The question that beckons to be asked is: Do you have an EDC and will it be a good start should the need arise?

Let's compare:
  • Multi-tool without knife (can't carry knife on a plane but have a pack I slide into my bag when I am not flying that has a knife, a multi-tool with a knife, and torch lighter)
  • Safety matches (according to TSA a standard set of "bar" or book matches are acceptable)
  • Signaling mirror
  • Monocular - 6ounces lighter than old Simmons Binoculars
  • Bandana
  • Pre-made first-aid kit (Colghan)
  • Clif Bar (2)
  • Water purification tablets
  • Powdered lemonade to add to water
  • Survival playing cards
  • Knot cards
  • Small Silva Compass (going to switch to a button compass)
  • 20' paracord (in addition to the two bracelets of 10' each I wear)
  • Titanium Spork (life's little luxuries)
  • Medicine
  • Ibuprofen
  • Eye drops
  • Eyeglasses (I wear contacts so these are my backup)
  • Cash and a few gold coins
  • Charging cords for electronics
  • Flashlight - Looking for a small Faraday or good crank flashlight to replace this one
  • Extra batteries for flashlight
  • Waterproof case
  • Shemagh
  • Toothbrush
  • Extra underwear
  • Extra socks
  • Extra shirt
  • Extra clothing enclosed in a gallon zip top bag
  • Bottle for water or bottle of water (depends on travel plans)

I'm sure I am missing something but that would at least get someone started. The total additional weight without water is about 4lbs. It is a good trade-off especially since I'm already carrying an 8lb laptop.

I welcome your comments.

Until then,
Use your instincts to survive

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