I’m not much of a survivalist, I guess. I don’t keep a flare gun in my car. Nor do I have a rifle on board (or attendant bandolier of bullets). I do schlep a hand-held GPS though. It’s called an iPhone. I’ve got a Surefire flashlight in the glovebox that’s so bright it’s got a MacArthur grant. As a recent resident of Texas hill country, I keep a hat with me at all times (a Panama that’s about as sturdy as piggy number one’s straw domicile). There’s a first aid kit in the bubba Benz’s boot. Wait. Did Iraqveteran8888 say five things? If you count two flashlights as one item, he’s showcasing seven. And that’s without counting all the stuff in his three-day pack as individual items. In the interests of brevity, I offer the following alternative, condensed version for gun guys on the move . . .

1. A handgun 

The odds of running out of gas or breaking down in the wrong place may be slim. The odds of being attacked are a fraction of that. To paraphrase our friend FPS, in violent world wrong place find you. Two words for that: Ennis Cosby.

If you don’t have a concealed carry permit—and even if you do—make sure you have a lock box or similar to store your firearm. If you have to leave your handgun in the car, take extra care with vehicle security. Pay for the damn parking lot. If you don’t think your car will be safe whilst unattended, ask yourself if it’s a good idea to be where you are in the first place.

2. A holster

The ideal solution for firearms-friendly motoring: a holstered gun. That said, no matter how a driver tools-up—hip, leg or Don Johnson-style—carrying while driving creates almost as many tactical compromises as the Arab – Israeli peace accord.

A lot of people can’t be bothered. Pampered pistol packers that they are, they don’t live by the old adage that a gun should be comforting not comfortable. So they keep a handgun in the glovebox “just in case.”

Yes, well, there are two basic self-defense scenarios where a gun might come into play: an immediate attack and a developing or potential deadly challenge. A gun in the glove box is not ideal for either.

In the first instance, no matter how much you practice, it takes time, coordination and at least momentary eye contact to get to a gat from a glovebox. Time and attention that would probably have been better spent driving away from (or at) the problem. Remember: the only gunfight you’re guaranteed to win is the one you don’t have.

It’s far more likely that an armed automobilist will need a gun to respond to something that’s happening—or could happen—while they’re outside the car. [See: Cosby killing above.] While carrying your gun into the danger zone in as public a manner as possible could have a disinhibiting effect on bad guys, a brandishing charge is no picnic.

The simplest and most versatile option for glovebox (or center console) quick-as-you-can out-of-car carry: a pocket holster. You can slip your gun into your pants (if you’re a guy), exit the vehicle and flag down traffic, go to the aid of an injured motorist, head off for gas, whatever. Our female readers  (both of them) want to think that through and stash a gun in a clothing-appropriate holster.

3. Spare ammo

I carry a spare mag with me at all times. Not because I think I’ll find myself in a firefight requiring 31 cartridges. Because Mr. Murphy is alway out there, somewhere (probably playing cards with chaos); the magazine is the bit of the gun that’s most likely to fail. And firearms failure sucks.

OK, yes, it’s true: no one ever ended a gunfight wishing they’d brought less ammo. And if you’re really paranoid, you want the rounds to trade for food and cigarettes as you fight your way back to your loved ones, marooned at home by the TEOTWAWKI.

In short: gas, phone, credit card, gun, holster, ammo. That’s six, but who’s counting?

81 Responses to Self-Defense Tip: Three Things to Keep in the Car With You

  1. It really depends on where you are and where you are likely to be.

    In a city you probably won’t need much.

    Where I live though it’s possible to be stuck in snow for a day or two at a time so I keep food, spare clothes, a pair of boots, and a couple of blankets in my car at a minimum.

    Also a man should always have access to emergency pants.

    • Yeah, thanks for pointing out a gun ain’t everything. I don’t know how many times I’ve been the only person in a Target parking lot with jumper cables. When minutes count, AAA is only hours away!

      I also carry road flares, plastic sheeting and rain ponchos. Duct tape is a great idea! Gotta get me some.

      • If you carry duct tape in your car, rotate in a fresh roll every year or so. The temperature swings in a car will turn a roll of duct tape into a sticky, difficult-to-use mess over time.

  2. Here is what I keep in my car inside a 5.11 Covert Bag (I’m in Arizona):
    – AR Pistol with 7.5″ barrel, mounted flashlight and Law Tactical folding stock adapter
    – 2 x 30 Round Mags
    – 6 Packs of Emergency Water
    – 1 Pack of Emergency Rations
    – Small Survival Kit (fire starter, emergency blanket, et al)
    – Small Medical Kit (blood clot, et al)
    – Knife
    – Mutli-tool

    No GPS but I also have an iPhone on me. I also CCW a M&P Shield in 9mm and have extra ammo for that as well.

      • Haha, nice try. How is listing what I have any different than someone doing a YouTube video like linked in this article?

        OPSEC is about revealing sensitive information that would give me away and I have not done that one bit.

        In other words, I didn’t list what I drive (make, model, color like in the video), what I city I lived in (we know what city he lives in), as if that would matter in “Arizona”. If you can find me based on the contents of my car bag, it would be impressive.

  3. Emergency kits are a must in your home and car. I’ve moved around a lot and have experienced quite a few natural disasters, above and beyond the man made ones. Snow, earthquake, tornado and flood I’ve experienced. You now live in Texas and you have your daughter with you. In Texas I experienced a tornado and a hailstorm that was so bad it caused extensive property damage and a fatality. It’s cheap insurance and it doesnt have to be a 100 pound rucksack.

  4. I agree with David W.

    It really depends are where you are or where you are going. If you are in the NY-NJ-CT Major Metro area, more likely than not, you are stones throw from a gas station or AAA.

    When my brother was going to school in the Thousand Lakes Region of NY, he carried food, water, spare clothes, a pair of boots, blankets, flares, fat wood, matches and more because sometimes when it snowed in those parts, they do not even bother plowing the roads for weeks and cell service is spotty at best. And, gun laws be damned, he carried a 22 pistol and rifle with a few bricks of ammo as well in case he had to defend himself from 2 legged or 4 legged friends. He did in fact get stranded once for 4hrs but was lucky to be picked up by a state work truck whose driver lived in the town of his university.

    Some day when I move out of CT, my situation will change and so will my prep. Right now where I live and work and play, civilization is usually a few miles away and cell phone works pretty much every where. In 40+ years the worst I was stranded was a flat tire is the pouring rain in the parking lot of dimly lit strip mall. When I was almost done, a cop rolled up on me and shined his bright lights so I could finish the job.

  5. Going beyond having a vehicle which provides room to carry lots of gear and supplies: I’ve read too many online pieces about the top# of things to carry for self-defense. I’ve read some that insisted carrying two guns, handcuffs, 75+ rounds, etc. I have never yet read one that advised a gun owner to include a trauma first-aid kit for possible used on himself. I have never read comments by a gun owner who carries a gun outside the home stating that he carries even a small first-aid kit on his person.

    Carrying a gun does not create magical force-field protection. Bullets fired by an attacker as well as a knife can slash-stab a law-abiding gun owner before he can use his gun in self-defense. If the possibility of needing and firing a gun in self-defense exists so that we do need to carry outside the home then so does the possibility of becoming critically wounded in the attack requiring the use of a first-aid kit.

    • So where do you draw the line? I’d love to cary everything as well, but I think leaving the home in a full Interceptor loadout is going to draw the wrong kind of attention.

      • I don’t know where to draw the line. I’m simply pointing out what are imo discussions and behaviors that puts so much emphasis on the gun as an end-all be-all solution and not the other half of the story that even with a gun we can still potentially become injured.

        • and I would think that statistically, you will need the med kit far more frequently than your gun. Even if you don’t get into a firefight.
          should you leave your gun over a med kit, certainly not but not having basic means of stopping bleeding, seems rather unsafe.

          Plus, I think everything should take a CPR course every 5 years. Knowing what to do is far more important than med kit loadout.

        • I’ve heard a few guys on YouTube saying a tourniquet and a pack of quikclot should go with you at all times.

          I think that’s sufficient first aid carry, but you’re starting to get into fanny pack territory even with that, so might as well throw in a few gauze pads, tape and band aids.

        • While I keep a first aid kit in my trunk, I also keep a mini trauma kit in my car. It all fits into a 3×5 molle pouch. It would be hard to carry doing normal stuff, but it is always there and I am usually not too far from my car during daily stuff. Sometimes I do carry it though. When I hunt, shoot, or fish, I clip it to my belt/range bag/tacklebox. Those are times when i figure the need is greatest. It is capable of treating gunshot wounds, bad cuts, snake bites, and such. I also have a mini bug repellant and suncreen. This is setup for my activities and environment. Convenient, and with me the times when I am most likely to need it. In my car the rest of the time, so hopefully not too far if needed unexpectedly. I could never go around with a bunch of crap in my pockets or a fanny pack.

    • Ok I always have a small first aid kit in my ruck sack and it goes with me everywhere it also has water and a few power bars a multi took knife and 2 reloads but so far the first aid kit and water have been the only ones used

      • You’re doing better than most including myself. I know that it would be inconvenient for most people (gun owners who carry) to also have a fist aid kit attached to their belt or in a slightly larger mid-size pack they lug around with them. I mostly posted my comment as food for thought since it seems too many gun owners too often confidently stop the conversation or concern if they have a gun with them.

        • 1st aid kit is always a great idea. I added super glue to mine. works great on smaller lacerations.
          Course it also has quick clot for the big stuff.

        • I tend to think of a shirt or part of a shirt, perhaps assisted with some duct tape as being the primary first aid kit. If I have a boo-boo it can probably either get a napkin stuck on it to avoid getting blood on my clothes or simply wait until I can deal with it. If we’re talking serious cut/stab or a gunshot wound, beyond a compress bandage and perhaps a tourniquet, what precisely is the first aid kit providing (note that most first aid kits don’t include either of these items).
          My ruck has both of the above as well as the little stuff that for preventing infection and making life a little easier when minor injuries occur but out walking around town I think the cost benefit for a first aid kit is ridiculously low and that the two things you’re going to need the most you essentially already have by very simple improvisation.
          Following the logic of carrying a first aid kit because you carry a CW or just in general because you might be injured in an attack makes armor a more attractive item than a first aid kit (mines on top of the ruck with the first aid kit in it). The simple reality is that an attack of any kind is remote for most people which makes being seriously injured in an attack even less likely. Coupled with the reality that for the vast majority the EMS is only minutes behind the cops, who themselves have first aid kits in every vehicle and the argument for carrying a first aid kit on person becomes untenable.
          If I thought at all there would be shooting I’d wear my armor, bring my kit and pack my rifle. The only reason I leave home without my combat loadout is the very statistical improbability of engaging in combat. A concealed pistol is meant as a last ditch defense against an unexpected attack and in the vast majority of cases its enough. I think the personal aid kit belongs with the rifles and armor; in the closet most of the time but for your own sake on your body if you even remotely think combat is possible and duty or circumstance require you not to GTFO.

    • +1
      I’ve been meaning to get at least a basic trauma kit to stash in my car. A gun is a great tool, but it’s doesn’t solve everything and I’d imagine that you’re more likely to need a solid first aid kit than a gun on a day to day basis. I’ve even seen some blow-out kits that are meant to be worn inside-the-waistband but that’s a little too much extra for me to carry around. Utility belt level: Batman.

  6. Zip ties, regular flares, large trash bag, (think ground blanket, poncho…), a few bottles of water, headlight, MRE, 1st aid kit, knife…

  7. Another point on the glove box;
    Any threat approaching that really is a threat, now knows by your obvious movements that you are arming yourself and now present a greater threat to them, prematurely setting off an exchange where you are at a great disadvantage.
    A subtle slide from a car holster keeps the threat thinking they have the high ground.

  8. I also carry a copy of “Essential Pepin” by Jacques Pepin. I mean someone has to carry on with civilization if TEOTAWKI happens, right?

      • Observed to be a myth. Everyone assumes they are the only person smart enougth to remember the TP. Result is everyone brings lots so won’t run out. Not the Soviet Union.

  9. Suggestion- GPS/iPhone nav is great, when it works, and when your device stays charged. Get a good compass and learn how to use it, and keep a map in your car.

  10. A can of fix-a-flat and a portable air pump that plugs into the car’s 12V outlet. A car’s no good to you if it’s barefoot.

  11. I have a mini bugout bag with coats, blanket, water, snacks. I’ve been in the habit of keeping an atlas and jury-rigged first aid kit since my last car. I also carry a portable inflator and always keep a tire pressure gauge.

    I don’t have a CCW yet, or a weapon fit for one (my Ruger 9mm is huge), so I carry pepper spray and keep a pocket knife in the console bin.

    • First aid kit is a must as is a multi-tool and water.

      If you can’t carry a firearm, consider substituting the classic doomsday bugout bag for a neutrally colored hiking daybag with normal hiking supplies (paracord, first aid kit, and power bars etc.) and then have a small hatchet and UDAP Bear Spray as part of that kit, accessable on the outside. That would be reasonable, non-confrontational preparations in the eyes of police, especially if you have a Golden Eagle year pass to national parks and the map of the closest park to where you live in an outside pocket of the pack. You might even enjoy a hike now and again.

      The items in a properly planned day bag would be useful in many situations – bear spray and/or hatchet would likely stop many things that a .380 wouldn’t, like bears or other things as nasty as bears. Night googles and handcuffs in a camo “recon assault” bag seem to me to be the kind of items that tells a policeman that he/she might have a serial killer or terrorist on their hands. There are legal pitfalls for using bear spray on a person but likely more defensible than explaining handcuffs or an illegally held pistol.

      Semper Fidelis,
      Jim

  12. I definitely fall in the category of pessimist when it comes to stocking
    my truck with survival gear. Most of what I have comes from personal
    hard learned lessons and responding to way too many accidents.

    Here’s a few things I’ve picked up:

    1) Never put critical gear in in the glove box/under dash. If you get in an
    accident pretty good chance these items will become inaccessible. If you
    do use the glove box, don’t put your registration and insurance card in it.

    2) Have a 1st aid kit in easy reach of the driver. If you’re pinned, that kit
    in the trunk isn’t going to help. I keep a small kit with a CAT, pads and
    Celox mounted on the side of the passenger seat using some molle straps.

    3) Have enough food and water for at least 2 days.

    4) At least one spare set of cloths that match local conditions. Note: shorts
    and a Hawaiian shirt aren’t particularly useful if you find yourself stuck in
    a snow drift.

    5) Keep a strap cutter and window punch in reach.

    6) Don’t skimp on tools. That plastic shovel may fit well in a road kit
    but it’ll snap the moment you use it.

    7) If you have a handgun and tend to leave it in your vehicle long term,
    consider a revolver. You won’t have issues with compressed magazine
    springs. Obviously only an issue if you load mags and forget about them
    for a couple months.

    8) Consider having a more powerful firearm in your vehicle. This is more
    of an issue where I live as moose and bear are definite road hazards.

    9) Have a box of extra ammo. Not as issue for some as spare rounds from
    shooting/hunting trips tend to accumulate in the glove box, console,
    door pocket etc…

    • “7) If you have a handgun and tend to leave it in your vehicle long term, consider a revolver. You won’t have issues with compressed magazine springs. Obviously only an issue if you load mags and forget about them for a couple months.”

      A couple months won’t make any difference to a modern (within the last 15 years) magazine. Modern metallurgy is such that a couple years may not make any repeatable, measurable difference in function. Springs don’t “take a set” like they did in your daddy’s WWII-issue 1911. I’ve seen tests of modern magazines (both GLOCK and Springer) loaded full and left alone for a full year, and when disassembled, their uncompressed spring length is only about 1/4″ shorter than the uncompressed length of a new, never-loaded magazine spring. That 1/4″ is not going to make any repeatably measurable difference in the functionality of the magazine. Furthermore, that spring that was 1/4″ shorter, if left uncompressed for an hour or so, will regain most of that shortage, and end almost indistinguishable from the never-compressed spring.

      The revolver’s still definitely not a bad idea.

      • As a rule I rotate mags monthly. I realize it’s not
        entirely necessary but I maintain that it’s not a
        bad practice. I’ve had issues with 1911 mags, even
        newer ones (Springfield’s no less). To be fair I
        haven’t had problems with mags from my
        Browning or Glock. These are also double stack
        mags so the springs have larger coils making them
        less prone to weakening.

        Another issue that I should have included is weather
        considerations. Living on the coast corrosion is a
        serious issue. I’ve had new mags become pitted in
        a few months (salt water mist just eats everything).
        I found magazines are more susceptible which is
        another reason I check and rotate mags. My solution
        was to simply get a nickel-plated revolver.

        • Yeah, there’s nothing wrong with it, and if it makes you feel better, by all means. But it’s not necessary like it was 20+ years ago. Back then, leaving them loaded was nearly a guarantee of failure.

  13. This is all great… But what if someone steals your car? There goes a lot of money and your nice weapon. I’d be concerned about that.

    I think it’d be a bad idea to store weapons in there. Especially up here where it is very wet. You’d have to watch out for corrosion.

    • Buy a Lok-Sak from Amazon and throw a dessicant packet in there with the weapon. No more corrosion concerns.

  14. If you’re going to bring extra ammo, it should follow that you should bring a first aid kit… make it big and with some hemostasis helpers like QuickClot… just sayin… 🙂

    • what if someone breaks into your house? Should you not keep guns in there? I keep my glock in a lock box, and if for some unfathomable reason i need more gun, i can fit my paratooper m1 carbine in a tennis racket bag.

      • It’s probably worth noting that where i live in Texas, hogs will get mighty mad if you use any thing less than a bazooka on them, so a no.5 mk.1 resides in a gym bag.

      • I though we were talking about cars… and I believe RF still carries a compact 9 unless the Texas heat has completely shelved his NE wardrobe…

        My point was that if you’re needing to fire that many rounds, unless you’re Neo you’re going to need a first aid kit.

        As for home carry and car carry… sure… keep extra ammo and mags. I like Israeli carry when the gun isn’t on body, so someone doesn’t accidentally find the gun and ND without knowing how to rack the slide.

  15. Two more suggestions:

    The “trucker’s friend”: a combination axe, pry bar, hammer, and lever. Intended for rescue work and breakdowns, not HTH combat, but I have one and it would be quite effective in the HTH role as well. $60.

    http://www.amazon.com/Innovation-Factory-Truckers-All-Purpose-Survival/dp/B005HAT9SM/ref=sr_1_cc_1?s=aps&ie=UTF8&qid=1375113807&sr=1-1-catcorr&keywords=truckers+friend

    Some good quality light sticks, the quality ones that are bright and last 12 hours, not dollar store crap. $10 for 12.

    http://www.amazon.com/Cyalume-SnapLight-Industrial-Chemical-Duration/dp/B004NBZLJ2/ref=sr_1_1?s=sporting-goods&ie=UTF8&qid=1375113925&sr=1-1&keywords=light+sticks

  16. Uh, 2-meter handheld radio, anyone? I’m all for self-reliance, and I know this is a gun site, but finding help is way up my list for any emergency. That’s kind of my definition of emergency, I suppose–something unexpected that I can’t handle on my own. It I could, it would be a story, maybe, but not an emergency.

    I don’t carry extra water driving around town, but it’s top on my list if I’m leaving the urban island of Phoenix. I also always have:
    – blankets
    – air compressor + tire repair
    – zip ties, bungee cords, tools (ratchets, etc.)
    – heavy duty plastic garbage bags
    – toilet paper (flattened roll in a 1-qt ziploc)
    – napkins
    – jumper cables
    – small flashlight, million candlepower rechargeable big light
    – lighter
    – sunblock, lotion, blistex
    – rain slick
    – small umbrella

    I have a handheld GPS, but it only comes with when I know where I’m going. I carry paper topo maps, because they’re portable and still work in steep canyons. GPS on my phone is garbage.

  17. I’m in the process of putting an emergency bag together for my wife’s car. So far, a trauma kit, 2 knives both full tang (1 in bag, 1 along side drivers seat), katadyn water filter, emergency poncho and shelter, power bars, 3 different fire starters and baggie of lint and a flashlight. She’s into guns and I just bought her a pt1911 but she still doesn’t have a ccl.

  18. TO: All
    RE: Walking-Out Kit

    In each of our three vehicles:

    • Rucksack
    • 1-Qt canteen in case w/water purification tablets in side pocket
    • Emergency reflective heat blanket
    • Poncho
    • Poncho Liner
    • Hiking shoes
    • Good socks
    • 3 ea emergency ration meals [NOTE: Homemade MREs in vacuum sealed bags. Each has ~1600 calories]
    • Fire-starter kit

    If it’s Winter:

    • Good coat with hood.
    • Winter gloves
    • Ski Mask

    I always wear a some kind of hat. Usually broad-brimmed slouch.
    I always have my .45 cal ACP with extra mags
    I always have my iPhone with the Topo app and maps for miles and miles around. [NOTE: I like the Topo map system because (1) it’s what I’m familiar with from map-reading in the Army and (2) it relies on GPS sats instead of having to latch onto a cellular service.]

    Regards,

    Chuck(le)
    [Be Prepared….]

  19. It must be an age thing…………….and I hate to be ignorant,

    BWTF does “TEOTWAWKI” mean………..

    Is it anything like ROTMFFLMMFAOWPAOTP?

      • Thanks! I always just figured when the SHTF was TEOTWAWKI. All the rest of this is just “interesting times”.

        But I also once told a liberal friend that I view people in one of two categories…………..she asked “What Republican and Democrat?” I said, “No, those that I fear and those I can eat.” She fell into the later………….

  20. In the absence of quik clot, or you’ve used it up, tea bags (no sniggering allowed) work wonders at getting blood to clot quickly due to the tannic acid. If you don’t need it to clot a cut or puncture wound, it can also give you a caffeine boost with minimal fuss.

  21. I’m with you Robt on KISS for EDC.

    If its REALLY too much bother to carry on you, then you dont need it, or you need to find a simpler way to accomplish same thing.

    Heres a smaller cell-phone gun holster for you to compare to the Wilson Murse: http://lightningwear.net/product/beltconceal-pocket-pistol-case-black-brown-1

    For me in CCW-not-available-anytime-soon-for-the-plebes in So Cal, its:
    phone, surefire fury, spiderco clipfolder, and wallet with always $300 cash.
    The rest I carry between my ears.

    Ask me another time about the get-home-bag.

    • PS: hat and sunglasses dont count- they are everyday clothing-
      especially in any hot weather.

      Can’t believe Nick didnt have them in that TX bugout…
      watching for the “urban bug-home” next episode for lessons learned.

      70% of body heat goes out your head- wet ball cap helps heat exhaustion/stroke,
      stocking cap saves you from hypothermia in winter on that long walk home…

      You’ll walk half as far without them…

  22. Don’t forget to add a large box of strike anywhere matches, vacuum sealed or in a double zip lock bag to keep them dry. A lighter is OK, but sometimes matches are more useful.

    • There are screw-capped tubes with rubber gaskets, i.e., o-rings, designed for carrying those types of matches. The better ones include a strike strip on the bottom.

      Personally, I prefer these magnesium block & steel file fire starters. They work even when wet.

      I keep mine in an old kiwi boot polish can with kindling already to go.

      I can make more kindling by placing thin strips of wood and/or cloth in the can and setting it close to the fire to dry it out properly.

    • Get an old prescription bottle or film roll container and superglue a strip of sandpaper to it for a weatherproof match carrier. A little pricier but better in all weather conditions is life boat matches. I have disposable lighters, matches and fire steel in my kit. Optionss are best.

  23. I used to keep a J-frame in the center console of my old ride, a position with which i am much for comfortable, but literally the only storage that will hold a gun in the cabin of my new car is the glove box. Why must sacrifices be made? Because racecar.

  24. Pay for a parking spot. That’s a good one. The only time my vehicle was ever burglarized was when I paid top dollar to park it in the ramp at the San Francisco wharf. Expensive parking means nothing to thieves. For all I know, the ramp attendants were in on it.

  25. A firestarter and a .22 pistol loaded with subsonic ammo wouldn’t be the worst idea. If your car breaks down in the middle of wilderness, you get to dine on roasted squirrel.

  26. Amazing how we spend thousands on guns, ammo, holsters, cleaning, targets, range fees, and few people have a first aid or small trauma kit.
    Any first aid kit in the $30-$50 range will do, and Amazon sells a small but effective Trauma kit , with quikclot for less than $20.
    http://www.amazon.com/Adventure-Medical-Kits-Trauma-QuikClot/dp/B003BS2PW4/ref=sr_1_2?s=sporting-goods&ie=UTF8&qid=1375137587&sr=1-2&keywords=quikclot

    Buy two, open the other and practice how you would open and use them, especially on the dark. Get a small, inexpensive headlight, you can’t hold a flashlight and treat an injury.

    All for less than the cost of a couple boxes of ammo.

  27. Its been a while since I did a full inventory, but here’s my car kit from memory:

    D-cell Maglite
    Surefire flashlight
    Headlamp
    Two folding knives
    2 gallons of water
    Breathable shell jacket
    Running shoes
    Ammo
    Jumper cables
    Handheld GPS
    Ball cap
    Beanie cap
    Sunglasses
    Multi-tool
    Tool kit
    Duct tape
    Fire starter
    First aid kit
    Rite-in-rain notebook
    Copy of important phone numbers & addresses
    Tow strap
    Hand sanitizer
    Day-pack (which contains a lot of this stuff)
    Dog food in gallon ziplock
    Wet wipes
    Paper towels
    Spare batteries for GPS
    State road maps

    I’ve spent a good portion of my professional life studying natural disasters, so that influences my load out. I also drive about 25,000 miles a year, and I expect SHTF will occur at the worst possible time – like when I’m 400 miles from home.

  28. In addition to the good survival ideas, one should seriously consider carrying a quart of engine oil for your car.

    Some of these modern cars have hamster-wheel sized engines, with crankcase capacities to match. It’s no big deal if my diesel pickup runs a quart low on oil – it has about four gallons of engine oil. Our modern Japanese AWD car? It takes barely four+ quarts. Get that engine a quart low and you’ll start seeing problems reasonably quickly.

    Also, engine oil makes for fuel to get a wet pile of wood going in an emergency situation.

    • I like the idea of motor oil as an improvised fire starter. It couldalso make a hell of a signal fire!

      • And how do you get it ‘started’?

        Why do I ask?

        Because earlier on thist thread there was a discussion about ‘matches’. I chimed in about ways to carry strike anywheres and added that I prefer a starter kit of magnesium block, steel file and kindling, all kept in an old Kisi boot polish tin.

        What’s my point? Motor oil is a good idea for dealing with wet wood. But you need something to get it going.

        I mention this because I’ve got a chiminaya on my back deck. I use oiled pine cones as the kindling to get the wood going. The oil comes from various cooking oils that have gone rancid.

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