Everyone should start by having a BOB on hand. This stands for a bug out bag. It means that you’ll have the supplies together in a bag that will enable you to at least survive for 72 hours.
The purpose of having this bag is so that you can get to it quickly and go. You should never wait until the last minute to pack a bug out bag. You never know if, by putting off gathering the supplies until the last minute, you might put your family in harm’s way.
Here’s an example of what can happen if you don’t have a bug out bag. A SHTF situation occurs and you have to get out fast. You have to leave your home in order to ensure your safety and that of your family.
You round everyone up and you jump in the car. You get going down the road only to find that the road is blocked. There’s debris everywhere. You can’t get out.
Or, the area has erupted into chaos, people are panicking and it’s not even safe to try to get out of your neighborhood. But it’s not safe to stay, either. So you’re stuck.
You might think that not being prepared with a BOB isn’t that big of a deal. After all, you have great neighbors and you all help each other out whenever it’s necessary.
Borrowing a tool is a far cry from needing help to survive. If it comes down to saving their family or yours, which one do you think they’ll pick? It’s not up to someone else to make sure you survive.
Or that your family survives. It’s up to you. When you’re forced to flee an area, it might come down to the fact that you have to flee too quickly to take the time to pack up even the basic supplies.
So when you rush out the door, sometimes on foot, you have the clothes on your back. And if you’re lucky, you and everyone else are wearing a pair of shoes that they’ll be able to walk for miles in.
The minute you’re in a SHTF situation, you understand very clearly how serious it is. The first thing you might notice is that with having to rush from an area, you’re in need of water.
Only you don’t have any so you have to try to find some. You find some, but it doesn’t look clear enough to signal that it’s safe to drink. And even if it does look clear, that doesn’t mean that it’s safe.
Bacteria can lurk in water that you won’t be able to see. With no water with you, you’re forced to make a choice. Take your chances and drink the water or take your chances and keep moving, hoping you’ll find a viable supply down the road somewhere.
If you have small children with you, the need to find water becomes even more urgent. Kids can’t withstand the lack of basic necessities as long as an adult can. Their bodies aren’t made to handle the same rigors.
And if you have a baby who’s on formula, there you are without a BOB, which means you don’t have formula and you don’t have water to give a baby. This means that your SHTF situation is about to get a whole lot worse.
Without a BOB, you don’t have any food. When your stomach starts to growl later that day or the next, you might be able to ignore it and push on, trying to find some food.
But food is your body’s fuel, so after awhile, you’re not going to have the energy to keep moving forward. If your family is with you, that means your children are looking to you for food.
The agony and desperation that you’ll face if you’re responsible for the survival of a child and yet you don’t have a way to get that for him will be overwhelming. You’re trying to get away from the SHTF situation and you’ve walked for miles without any luck.
Now that the day is drawing to a close, you have to find shelter – only you’re not familiar with living outdoors – especially without supplies. Having a BOB would ensure that you’d have shelter when you need it most.
Without it, you’re exposed to the elements and so is your family. You’ll have an up close and personal experience with rain, with crawling and flying pests, and with cold or hot temperatures.
If you have children, you’ll try to huddle together to keep out of the cold or try to make sure they don’t come in contact with something while sleeping on the ground that could harm their skin.
While you’re on the way, trying to find a way just to survive for a few days so you can wrap your mind around what’s going on, you get hurt. Or someone in your family does.
You don’t know if you can safely wrap a leaf around a bleeding wound, but you have to because you don’t have a first aid kit. If you sprain an ankle or sustain a leg injury, you’ll be forced to try to keep on going despite the pain and misery.
If it’s a child that can’t walk, then you’ll have to carry him on your back. Suddenly, you have that added weight in addition to the weight of the world on your shoulders.
When you’re forced to bug out, you’ll be faced with experiences that you may not have had before in your life. It will come down to a matter of survival and how you respond will determine if you and your family will survive.
You can’t live long without water, food and shelter. Those are the three basic needs that you have to cover to make sure that you and those you love are going to be okay.
When you don’t have a BOB, you won’t have the basic tools of survival. You’ll have no way to start a fire or to defend yourself or your family. You won’t have the means to survive what can be an otherwise survivable situation.
When you fail to plan, you plan to fail – as the saying goes. With some things, the price that you’ll pay for not planning can fall under an inconvenience or a difficult lesson learned.
But a SHTF situation is a test of survival that, unless you’ve studied for it, unless you’ve prepared for it, won’t give you a chance to make up that test. It’s not a lesson you learn and fix next time because there may not be a next time for you.