Preparedness

Emergency Preparedness Skills Every Person Should Consider Knowing

Staying safe and helping those around you to stay as safe as possible will require you to do some work. Emergencies can crop up at any time and having a base knowledge of the skills listed below can help you and yours to survive nearly any crisis well.

First Aid

If you come across someone who’s fainted or collapsed, what do you do? How do you help them without harming them, and what signs should you look for? The big two factors are

  • is there a pulse?
  • are they breathing?

If both of these are true, take a look at their color. Are they bright red and sweating, or pale and cold to the touch? To get blood back to the brain, lift their feet 12 inches above the level of their heart. As they come around, orient them to where they are and what’s happened; let them know they’re safe and you’re helping them.

Find out where any pain is occurring and ask them when the last time they ate something. Make sure you share this information with emergency personnel when they arrive; if the person needs surgery, knowing the last meal time can help.

Self Defense

The first step in self defense is to be aware. If you like to use headphones, take them out when you cross parking lots or if you’re out after dark. If you have access to a security guard, use them to walk you to your car or at least watch until you get in your car.

Be ready to make noise and scream “Fire!” if someone gets too close or frightens you. The decision to fight back may seem contrary to your personality, but if you can walk like you’re at least willing to throw a punch, you will lose the aura of victimhood and probably be left alone. Keep your hands loose and don’t walk from work or store to your car with your hands full of purse and shopping. Predators are less likely to attack people who look confident and capable.

Thrift and Frugality

One of the best things you can do to survive a crisis is to be able to live on very little. If your home is not set up to store extra

  • food
  • water
  • consumables

and a crisis hits, such as a global pandemic, you could be a in a really bad patch. Think outside the box. Get a trunk that you can use as a coffee table and load it with canned foods, dried beans and rice. Pack them in smaller airtight tubs to avoid pests.

If you can easily cut out or at least reduce the amount of meat you eat each week, you can save money when things get tight. Can you live without cable? The ability to live on very little money is a great way to protect your family during a crisis.

Lockpicking

Wait. Lockpicking? Isn’t that something for thieves and burglars? Not necessarily. Knowing how to pick locks is generally associated with crime, but the skill can be extremely useful in survival situation. There are plenty of circumstances outside of criminal enterprises where knowing how to get into or out of a locked door can be useful, particularly in conjunction with self-defense. Keys fell out while swimming? Locked in a trunk or a room that locked automatically? Lost the key to your bike lock? Getting a lock pick set and trying your hand can be useful in a wide variety of honest problems.

Protect Self from Cold

If you’re driving on snowy roads and slide off the road, how will you stay warm? To travel safe in cold country

  • keep your fuel level at 1/2 tank or better all winter long
  • dress in layers that will hold heat close, particularly fleece
  • avoid alcohol in extreme cold

You’ll want to carry blankets in your car, preferably either fleece or wool. Make sure that your phone is charged before you start your trip, and if you’re going to pass through areas with no service, let folks know when you leave and your planned arrival time.

Keeping you and yours safe can be a part of your routine. Once you build your skills and invest in just a few pieces of gear, be ready to keep learning. Take martial arts. Learn skills to live off-grid. Take a CPR class.