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Emergency Preparedness Survival Tips

Updated on March 31, 2015

My Top Ten Survival Tips

I'm an up and coming prepper who, over the last couple of years, has done quite a bit of research, and purchases of prepper materials. I've put together my top ten survival tips, and I hope that this helps with your prepping research and supplies search.

Emergency Preparedness Tip #1 - Ample Water Supply

Water is the number one key to survival. Having an ample supply of potable drinking water is essential for long term survival in an emergency situation. The human body can give out in as little as 3 days without water, particularly in a warmer climate scenario.

Your blood thickens when you become dehydrated taxing your heart and raising your blood pressure. This coagulation prevents the body from circulating the body. In cold temperatures this can lead to frostbite because the body cannot distribute heat via the blood to areas and organs of the body that need it. This makes heart attacks and stroke a real threat.

The importance of water in the digestion of food is a key factor. The process of digestion is where we get our vital nutrients. Proteins especially require tons of water in the digestive system to be processed. This is why it’s important to limit your protein intake in really hot climates because of the difficulty in digesting proteins.

Currently, I have two emergency water storage kit barrels, 3 Deer Park jugs, and 2 boxes of emergency survival water pouches (barrels and water pouches shown at right on Amazon.Com where I purchased them).

You'll also want to have on hand potable water treatment tablets, that you'll have to drop in your water storage periodically to keep the water potable (drinkable), by killing harmful bacteria in the water (specifically Giardia lamblia).

Emergency Preparedness Tip #2 - Ample Food Supply

After water, an ample food supply is the next most important emergency preparedness item you'll need to guarantee short and long term survival. Long term storage viability is essential for food to last out an emergency situation. Many preppers can their food themselves, they'll vacuum seal their foods they've prepared, and this can extend the life of those foods significantly. For those that aren't seasoned preppers and food preparers, there are companies that make foods in proper food storage containment systems for long term use.

One such company is Legacy Food Storage (see video above). After experiencing Meals-Ready-to-Eat (MREs) and other brands, I can say that their food is head and shoulders above the rest in taste (at least with the experience I've had). Their foods are guaranteed fresh for 25 years, due to their food containment technology, and have been voted best tasting in industry polls. They provide a multitude of meal options, with smart calories for survival and nutrition in mind.

Emergency Preparedness Tip #3 - First Aid Kit

Having a well stocked first aid kit complete with antibiotics and other infection fighting supplies may be the difference between successfully treating a minor injury and dying a miserable death by septicemia.

The American Red Cross provides a list of what should be in your first aid kit (link at right). I've included the Red Cross list below to stay on this page (list courtesy of

  • 2 absorbent compress dressings (5 x 9 inches)
  • 25 adhesive bandages (assorted sizes)
  • 1 adhesive cloth tape (10 yards x 1 inch)
  • 5 antibiotic ointment packets (approximately 1 gram)
  • 5 antiseptic wipe packets
  • 2 packets of aspirin (81 mg each)
  • 1 blanket (space blanket)
  • 1 breathing barrier (with one-way valve)
  • 1 instant cold compress
  • 2 pair of nonlatex gloves (size: large)
  • 2 hydrocortisone ointment packets (approximately 1 gram each)
  • Scissors
  • 1 roller bandage (3 inches wide)
  • 1 roller bandage (4 inches wide)
  • 5 sterile gauze pads (3 x 3 inches)
  • 5 sterile gauze pads (4 x 4 inches)
  • Oral thermometer (non-mercury/nonglass)
  • 2 triangular bandages
  • Tweezers
  • First aid instruction booklet

Paracord - A Must Have For Survival Preparedness

One of the main benefits of paracord is the inner strands. You can use them as much or more than the paracord itself.
One of the main benefits of paracord is the inner strands. You can use them as much or more than the paracord itself. | Source

Paracord on Amazon.Com

Rothco Type III Commercial Paracord
Rothco Type III Commercial Paracord

Commercial paracord ideal for utility use. 7-strand core made to 550-pound test. 100-percent nylon construction. Made by certified U.S. Government contractor. 4.5 Out of 5 Star Amazon.Com Rating. Over 1400 reviews as of 3/24/14.

Measures 5/32 inches in diameter


Emergency Preparedness Tip #4 - Paracord

Paracord has been used in the military for decades. Paracord is not on everyone's top ten list for survival supplies, but it's on mine. It is 100 percent nylon, and in an emergency preparedness scenario, has dozens of potential applications. I currently have about 200 feet of paracord in my survival supplies, and plan to get more, because of the many applications paracord has. Examples of uses of paracord in a survival situation include:

  • Repair of torn clothing (paracord is made of multiple fibers, as seen at right, which can be separated into smaller pieces (thread-like) to sew and repair your clothes)
  • Secure or tie down items either on your car or in a high wind / storm situation
  • Use as a clothes line
  • Hanging a bear bag to keep food off the ground away from animals
  • Use as dental floss (as discussed above, paracord can be broken down to smaller threads)
  • Secure animals (pets) to a tree or to make a leash
  • Rig a pulley system using paracord, and double or triple up paracord for lowering yourself down from a height (not designed for this, but in an emergency can work)
  • Rig an improvised hammock
  • Great for building a shelter and tying up ends to a tree
  • Create fishing line from the paracord fibers
  • Build a sling for protection and hunting
  • Build a raft by tying logs together with the paracord

Emergency Preparedness Tip #5 - Survival Knife

If you have ever been in a survival situation, then a survival knife would be at the top of your list. Here is a short list of what a survival knife could be used for:

  • Cleaning game
  • Preparing shelter
  • Personal protection
  • Opening food rations
  • Creating shelter
  • Starting fires (with flint)

It's overall the most versatile tool you can possibly have in a survival situation.

Many Uses of Duct Tape

Emergency Preparedness Tip #6 - Duct Tape

There are dozens of ways to use duct tape in a survival situation. This stuff was invented during World War II (GI's called it 'duck tape' because it's waterproof for repairs in the field), and has evolved over time with human ingenuity to be a do-it-all tape. For survival purposes, here's a few uses of duct tape:

  • Tent repair (fixing a tear)
  • Use as a rope by twisting the tape, very strong
  • Make a clothesline (similar to the rope)
  • Repair a sleeping bag tear
  • Resealing of food packages (tight seal)
  • Repair a fishing rod or tent pole
  • Makes a great fly/insect catcher, by hanging long strips near your location
  • Bottle water repair
  • Strap a knife to a pole or stick and attach with duct tape, and you have a spear
  • Wrap a sprained ankle by taping around the foot and ankle
  • And the list goes on and on....

Emergency Preparedness Tip #7 - Handgun and Ammunition

Now, currently I don't own a handgun. I own a shotgun for home protection. I like the idea of a handgun, and will eventually purchase one. Handguns and ammo for them, I believe, are essential for personal protection. Whatever may cause the next disaster scenario, if food, gasoline, medicine and other important necessities of life become scarce, many people (the have not's) are going to come after the people who are prepped and ready for the next disaster scenario. They won't think twice about injuring or killing you to get what they want. And you will need to protect what you have. I firmly believe in this..

Storm-proof matches in waterproof container
Storm-proof matches in waterproof container | Source

Emergency Preparedness Tip #8 - Matches

Not much of a shocker here. Check out storm-proof matches. I have tested these matches and they are tough to beat. If you go with regular matches there are two important things to remember about your matches.

  • They need to be waterproof, and
  • You need to store matches in multiple places. Even if you have a pile of waterproof matches, if they are all in the same bag or box and you lose them, that’s it. So use a couple of empty empty tins and store matches in several places.

Emergency Preparedness Tip #9 - Bug Out Bag Backpacks

A bug out bag backpack is critical to have in your car, office and home. You need to be ready for anything at a moments notice, to be able to leave immediately with a pre-prepared backpack so you can survive the next few days, until things settle down. You and your family should have a plan on where to meet during a disaster scenario, and should each have enough food, water and supplies for about 72 hours, per expert preppers. Check out the survival backpack at right on Amazon.Com, and it will describe the contents of the pack, in case you want to build your own bug out bag..

Emergency Preparedness Tip #10 - Handcrank Radio/Flashlight

What's the good of surviving if you don't know where to go for assistance, or if another disaster is headed in your direction? The radio will help you stay attached to the local news and weather, especially if it's hand crank powered. It doesn't run on batteries (although many have battery backup), so it wouldn't die on you when you are trying to reach help. If it is also a crank powered flashlight, even better! The light would things easily accessible instead of having to fumble around in the dark. Not having to rely on batteries is essential, since stores would run out of batteries very quickly in a disaster scenario. Also, the newer hand cranks have USB cell phone and electronic device charger capability, like the one at right sold on Amazon.Com.


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    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 

      3 years ago from Oklahoma

      Interesting ideas for preparedness.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 

      4 years ago

      Brian, we live in South Florida where one must be prepared for weather alerts, mainly hurricanes. Thank God we haven't had one in years, but one needs to be prepared with the supplies/materials you mention here. Thank you for the information. Voted++ and sharing.


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