If ever there was a time to be prepared, now would be the time. With food shortages due to panic buying and increased incidences of natural disasters – survival scenarios are now becoming more frequent.
Depending on the type of situation you’re in, you’ll need to decide if you’ll stay home and huddle with your family… or if you’ll bug out somewhere else. The nature and severity of the scenario will determine your response.
For example, if there’s a blizzard outside, you’ll definitely be staying home. However, if there’s a category 4 hurricane coming your way, you’ll be better off leaving the comfort of your home and seeking refuge somewhere safe. But if it’s a Cat 2 hurricane, you might choose to stay home.
In this article, we’ll look at 10 items you MUST have if you’re ‘surviving’ indoors. They’re in no particular order. All are just as important.
1. Water Purification Tablets
During a survival situation such as a hurricane which causes floods, the water supply can become contaminated with organisms and bacteria which are deleterious to one’s health when consumed.
The best way to ensure that the water you’re drinking is safe will be to treat it with a germicidal water purification tablet.
If you’re drinking the water, you may wish to boil it first, and then treat it with the tablet. If you’re using the water to shower or wash dishes, etc. fill up a pail with water first, treat it with the tablet… and use it.
Do not be complacent here. Getting sick from drinking contaminated water is a serious issue and will require medical attention. So it’s best to err on the side of caution and use a purification tablet on all water you use for drinking, bathing, etc.
If you want to be extra safe, you can get a Lifestraw too.
2. All-Purpose First Aid Emergency Kit
Every home should have a well-stocked first aid kit whether one is a survivalist or not. A first aid kit must have all the essential first aid supplies that can be used to treat different types of wounds sustained during a survival situation.
A small box with 3 band aids and dental floss is NOT a proper first aid kit! You’re not making makeshift bikinis here. This is survival. You need more.
There are many excellent first aid kits sold on Amazon that are compact and have all the items you’ll need. A good first aid kit will have supplies such as:
- Eye care supplies
- A tourniquet
- A whistle
- Antiseptic wipes
- Medical tape
- And much more!
If you’re going to buy a first aid kit, make sure it’s a good one. Since you’re keeping it at home, you don’t really need to worry too much about the size and weight of the kit.
You may also want to get one for your car. In this way, if you have to leave your home or there’s a vehicular accident, there’s always a first aid kit handy to treat any wounds until you can get professional medical help.
Usually, the supplies in your first aid kit will have an expiration date. So, make sure you know when the supplies expire so that you can get new ones.
3. 30-Day Emergency Food Supply
Ideally, you should have stored up lots of grains, rice, flour, instant noodles, canned meat and other food supplies. During a crisis, if the store shelves are empty (and they usually will be), you’ll be in a tight spot if there’s no food stocked up at home.
You always want to have enough food to last you for about 3 weeks to a month. We’ll assume that by this time food aid will arrive and the situation will be better.
When crisis strikes, if the electricity goes down, you’ll want to consume the perishable items in your refrigerator first. Once you’re done with those, you can start eating the canned foods and other supplies you’ve stored in your pantry.
Finally, you want to have a 30-day emergency food supply kit for each member of your household. These are ready-to-eat meals that are stored in disaster-resistant packaging.
These foods may have a shelf life of up to 25 years because they’re specifically made for survival purposes. You may want to get a 72-hour food kit for your bug out bags too. Just in case you need to leave your home.
4. Emergency Radio
An emergency radio will help you stay informed of the latest news. These types of radios are especially useful when there’s a power outage because of a natural disaster.
Since you won’t be able to use the TV or your Wi-Fi to check the news, you’ll be in the dark (literally and metaphorically) about what’s happening out in the world. It’s best to have an emergency radio and check if it can be charged with solar power.
In this way, you can save on batteries too. Some emergency radios come equipped with a hand crank that you can use to charge the radio. Depending on the model you get, the radio may have a flashlight, headphone jack, emergency mobile phone charger and other features.
You may wish to get an extra radio for your car too. While this is a must-have item in the house, it’ll be just as useful if you’re camping outdoors or surviving in the wilderness.
It’s important to know that unlike a conventional radio, an emergency survival radio is generally made of sturdier and more durable material designed to withstand knocks and bumps that are common in a survival situation. Most ‘normal’ radios won’t have SOS alarms and other features useful for survival – but your emergency radio will!
5. Battery Powered Power Bank
Most of us can’t live without our mobile phones these days. In the past, you could charge your Nokia phones once and the battery would last for days.
Nowadays, with smartphones, the battery power gets used up fast and furiously. Most mobile phones are charged via electrical outlets or power banks. During a survival scenario, if the electricity is down, you’ll not be able to charge your phone.
Gasp! What will you do?
Even if you use a power bank, after a while the power bank will be empty and will need electricity to get charged too. Now you’re in a fix.
There are some flashlights that have hand crank chargers and the manufacturers claim that you can charge your phone by cranking these chargers. Yet, countless people have reported that these hand crank type of chargers do not work well.
In this situation, you need a charger that uses disposable batteries. The best solution we’ve found is the ADCB power bank. It uses 4x AA batteries and you can charge your phone with it. Just insert the batteries and your USB cable in the power bank and charge.
As long as you have lots of batteries stored up (important), you’ll have enough battery power to charge your mobile phone. That said, if the power is down, you might have no internet access because your Wi-Fi is down too. So even if your mobile phone works, you’ll probably only be able to use it to text your friends… but most other apps which rely on the internet will be unusable.
Just one of the many first-world problems which rear their ugly heads during survival situations.
6. Bug Out Bag
While this article focuses on staying indoors, there may come a time when you need to evacuate. This could be due to a variety of reasons… but almost always, it will mean that it’s no longer safe to stay where you are.
A bug out bag is a bag that will be used to store items that you’ll need once you leave your home. Generally, survival guides will tell you that your bag needs to have rations and supplies that will last you for at least 72 hours.
Here are just some of the items you’ll need:
- Food rations
- A tent
- First aid kit
- Passport and other identification documents
- Pet food (if you have a pet)
- Emergency radio
- Firearm (if you’re allowed to carry one)
- Fire starter kit
- And more
As you can see, there’s quite a bit to carry. You’ll definitely have more items than what’s mentioned above, not to mention that you’re looking at 3-days’ worth of food and water.
You definitely need a strong bug out bag to handle the weight, and the material used to construct the bag needs to be durable. The straps of the rucksack should have cushions so that carrying it will be easier on your shoulders.
Some rucksacks are hydration compatible. So, you can add a hydration bladder to it. That’s an excellent way to bring more water with you. You can never store too much water.
7. Self-Defense Weapons
Nothing quite beats a firearm when it comes to self-protection. During a survival situation, you can bet that others will not be as prepared as you – and they WILL be desperate.
Guess what happens when people are desperately looking for food and water to survive?
Their survival instincts will kick in and they’ll be even willing to rob and kill to get what they want. This happens even when there are no survival scenarios… so you can never be too careful. Never underestimate what a desperate person will do.
You’ll want to get at least 2 types of firearms: a shotgun for home protection… and a handgun for times when you go to the store or outdoors. You can get mugged anywhere, if times are bad enough.
Make sure you get training on how to use the firearm, and spend time at the range practicing – so that you become a better shot.
Other than firearms, you may wish to get a pepper spray and a stun gun. These are non-lethal self-defense weapons that can still protect you.
We’re not going to mention knives because using a knife in a self-defense situation is very tricky. Very often, people get stabbed with their own knives when the perpetrator overpowers them… or sometimes they cut themselves while wielding the knife clumsily.
So, unless you’re trained in close quarter combat which focuses on knife fighting, you’re better off with the other self-defense weapons.
8. Tactical Flashlight
A tactical flashlight is a MUST-HAVE for every prepper/survivalist. Don’t even think twice about it.
Unlike conventional flashlights, tactical flashlights are ultra-bright and can illuminate an entire room. The light beam emitted by these torches can even reach up to a thousand feet.
These water-proof flashlights are made of extremely strong military-grade aluminum that can withstand blows, shocks and drops. In fact, tactical flashlights can be used for self-defense to temporarily blind attackers while you make your escape.
If you’re trained to fight with a weapon, the same techniques will apply to using a tactical flashlight like you would a dagger. The only difference is that you’ll be striking and causing blunt force trauma as opposed to stabbing or slashing.
Make sure you get one for each member of your family… and have enough batteries stored up to power them when you need to.
9. Indoor Stove
You may be wondering, “Why do I need an indoor stove when I’m at home?”
There are a few reasons for this – but the most obvious one is that your gas supply may be cut off. You can’t really predict what will happen during a disaster. Gas lines may be disrupted and there could be chaos which will leave you without gas to cook your meals at home.
If the electricity is down, you won’t be able to use your microwave to heat up your meals either. That’s exactly why you need an indoor stove.
You could have all the canned foods and ready-to-eat meals stored up, but without a way to warm up your food, you’ll be stuck with cold food and it will all seem more dismal and miserable than it has to be.
So, get an indoor stove and make sure you get a few gas cylinders to power the stove.
You may choose to use your cookware at home when heating your food, or you might want to get some mess tins which are lighter and will conduct heat faster and better.
10. Camping Lantern
During a crisis, when the power goes out, unless you have camping lanterns to light up your room/house, you will be sitting in the dark, brooding like Batman over your lack of preparation
You need a few camping lanterns. Preferably one for each room in your house. Then you won’t need to carry them around.
These lanterns can be used indoors and outdoors. Since they’re powered by batteries, you won’t need to worry about fuel, fumes or other hassles that people had to deal with in the past when using kerosene lanterns.
Camping lanterns are portable, collapsible and provide more light than candles. While you should have a box of candles stored (just in case), these should only be used during times when you have no more batteries left for your lanterns.
Which is why, you must have at least 200 batteries stored up, both AA and AAA. Batteries don’t take up much space and even having 300 or more will not be a bad thing. You can never have too many batteries. Best to get a few battery combo packs.
The 10 items mentioned above are just a few of many other survival tools on the market – but these are some of the most important ones.
Of course, you may also wish to store butane lighters for your stove. Or you may get vegetable seeds for your survival garden (if you’re homesteading).
One fantastic way to generate your own electricity using solar power will be to follow the method in Easy Power Plan and build your own device. Survival becomes much easier when you’re less reliant on the power grid.
At the end of the day, how comfortable you are during a crisis will depend on how well-prepared you are.
The recent pandemic has shown that crisis, manufactured or not, can happen at any time and you cannot afford to be lackadaisical when it comes to being prepared. So start early and get the items you need.