35 Life-Saving Tips That Aren’t Hard To Remember But Might Come In Handy When You Least Expect It, As Told By Our Community
I saw another post asking if you had any not helpful survival tips, but I was wondering if our pandas had any HELPFUL advice.
My three best tips are if you facing the rising sun, that's east. If you turn right, that's south. If you turn left, that's north, and if you turn all the way around, that's west. My second tip is don't drink standing water, and my third tip is if you find a river, go downstream (there's likely a settlement there).
Bonus tip from a video game: If you see a plume of smoke, there's likely someone at the origin. Scroll down for all the useful tips!
If you're ever alone and get something stuck in your throat 'til you can't breathe, throw yourself backward against a wall or any hard vertical surface. Do it 'til it dislodges the object. Thank goodness for the foot-thick concrete walls of that old creamery building, I'm still here.
If you live in a place that gets tornadoes, keep a loud whistle wherever you take shelter. If you get trapped under debris, a whistle is louder than yelling and doesn't take as much energy.
If you are buried under snow, rubble or debris, it's wise to pee yourself. The smell will make it easier for search dogs to find you faster.
If you encounter a wolf, NEVER, EVER run away, as it will think you are prey fleeing. And ALWAYS keep eye contact with the wolf (yet don’t stare) while raising your arms to make yourself look big and intimidating. Slowly back away. This trick works gradually, but if you want to scare them off quickly, bend down (WHILE KEEPING EYE CONTACT) and pick up a stick or rock to throw at the wolf. You can also, if you have a gun, shoot it in the air. DO NOT shoot it at the wolf, as if they survive the shot they will charge and try to kill you. If you are walking with a group, link together and be intimidating-also, if there are vulnerable or young people, form a circle and keep them in the middle. Wolves rarely attack people unless rabid, starving, (Really, really starving) hurt, or if you had gone too close to them or terrorized them in any way. Wolf attacks and encounters are very rare, as wolves are shy and actually harmless. They are a major keystone species and very essential to the environment, so they aren’t bad at all. Many people are misled, thinking “Oh Wolves are bad because they are bloodthirsty killers, they want to hurt us.” But no, they are actually not. If you are camping, a campfire will also deter them away.
If you're going through thick woods and you want to get out into a clearing, look at the treetops. You can notice clearings better than looking through the trees at eye level.
Always keep a jar of peanut butter in your vehicle. Lots of calories and it lasts along time without spoiling.
A small Swiss Army knife or Leatherman comes in handy for unexpected situations, especially if it comes with small pliers.
Know your exits. If you're at a concert or bar or theatre or anywhere like that take a second when you arrive to note the location of the exits. In a fire or other disaster most people will head for the door they came in. If there's going to be a crush, that's where it will be.
If there is smoke then, if possible, get low and stay down until you're out of the building. One or two breaths of smoke can incapacitate you. If you can't get low try and find something - a shirt, a scarf, anything, to tie over your mouth and nose. If you can wet it first so much the better.
And remember once out never ever re-enter a burning building. The odds are that you won't save anyone, you'll just add to the body count. I mean if your kids are in there you're probably going to ignore this and that's understandable, but just know you have very low odds of success without breathing apparatus.
The first of these is hugely important though, so I'm repeating it. Always always know your exits.
A car 'emergency kit' with basic tools, long-life foods, battery bank and charging cables, flashlight and an inflatable pillow... I have an ever-growing survival set of items I needed but did not have at one time.
In a restaurant or a bar never leave your drink unattended. Spiking drinks is more common than people think.
If your hair ever starts to stand up when you are outside, run, and run like HECK! You might be struck by lightning.
If you are going anywhere away from everyone who cares about you (whether on a hike or a date) let someone know where you are going, when you expect to be back and who to contact if you are not contactable after that time.
Always carry three items with you no matter what: A lighter, a foil emergency blanket, and a cheap rain poncho in a packet. These take up very little space even in pockets, provide fire, shelter, and in the case of the foil blanket, also a signal device.
If stranded in the desert, NEVER drink cactus water. It's too acidic to be useful and can cause vomiting, diarrhea, or even temporary paralysis. Not fun. Additionally, find a place in the shade during the day and travel at night.
If you're hiking in cold weather and start to sweat, stop and remove some layers until you feel cool again.
If someone pulls a gun on you DON'T allow them to take you to a different location. Run away.
Teach your children Your (real) Name, Phone number, home address, and a safe word that only you all know
If they get lost at a park/amusement park/mall etc... they will know your name not just call you mom or dad or grandma, granddad, aunt uncle, sister, brother...or by a nick name
Take a picture of your kid(s) once you get to your destination, this way, if they do become separated from you...you will have a current picture of them.
The safe word: if someone says Your Mom Dad etc, said for me to come get you...your kid should asks them for the safe word given, so they know to go with them...
Stay away from glass office windows if you hear a ruckus going on outside. Bombers lure people to the windows by creating disturbances outside.
The emergency signal SOS in morse code is 3xshort 3xlong 3xshort. The alpine emergency signal is 1 short signal every 10 seconds for a minute, followed by a one-minute pause. (Confirmation answer is 3 short signals)
I always make sure my gas tank is more than half full (especially in the winter). Carry printed maps, peanut butter, a gallon of water, crackers, an extra coat, pillow, blanket, and a whole extra outfit including shoes. Also have jumper cables, tire plug kit, and some basic tools.
When you go hiking, wear proper equipment, preferably hiking/combat boots with long laces. If you tie the laces tightly around your foot the chances of you spraining your ankle lessens. The boot will support it.
I personally am quite accident prone. I always take a cloth with me in case i need to stop a wound from bleeding and keep skin in place. I've had to reattach the front half of my leg with Band-Aids before and trust me, the cloth works far better. Press the cloth over the wound and tie it with the shoelaces.
Not really survival but definitely helpful for just not getting hurt too badly.
In your car: have a permanent marker in the cup holder, glove box or between the front seat pocket. If anything happens, you see anything, need to remember something, write it on the glass window, rearview mirror, on your hand, anywhere. Pens & pencils are unreliable. Clean off marker later. (For a license plate #, address, car make, model & color.)
Put on the kettle for tea/coffee if you get lost. As soon as you realise yoh are lost, stop. Make a fire or at least sit down and eat/drink something. Do not leave untill you have a direction and plan. The fire and put on the kettle bit will help you to calm down, and give comfort. That was the first thing we learned on the survival course when I went to a school for forrestry workers in my youth. It was up in Swedish Lappland, and the survival bit was serious - if you get lost and start to walk in the wrong direction up there, you will most likely never be seen again.
If you find water, DON'T DRINK IT. Boil it first then use it for tea. Or you could also use one of those tablets that purify water. This kills all the bacteria in it so it's safe to drink.
If you live in an area with tornados, wear sturdy shoes in your safe place. If the worst happens, you will at least have good shoes on to clean up the aftermath.
Eat and drink normally the first few days while you're setting up your shelter. It's more important to have enough energy to get you set up for the long term, so you can spend the rest of your time sleeping if you need to. Part of the shelter should be making a big sign for help. 3 straight lines, Xs, SOS if you can.
Food requires water to digest. Don't ration/save the food if you know you won't get more water.
Do not consider yourself as a main character, where everything is gonna be ok. Always think twice.. Bad thins happens with you too.
If you're lost, in trouble, or being followed/harassed, it's far better to just pick a person and ask for help rather than relying on someone who offers. Most people are willing to help you if you ask with a specific request and someone volunteering might just be seeing a situation where they can take advantage of your vulnerability. The best person to ask is a woman with children with her followed by a man with children with him. People with children are more likely to be decent to set a good example for their kids in public and if they are a garbage human being will behave in front of their kids.
If you are lost in the countryside, follow water. Almost all towns, villages, cities are built near water. Folllowing water will mean you dont go in circles, have a ready source of drinkable water and are more likely to find civilisation. Depending on what you are carrying you may also be able to catch fish as well.
Hiking: If unfamiliar, take a map or compass. If you have a dog with you, follow your dog. Their sense of direction is amazing. I should have paid attention to mine when I was lost. She headed in the right direction and me thinking it was wrong, told her to follow me; ended up walking in circles until I found my way out. Bring water and food that won't spoil.
Always have baking soda at hand near the stove to put out fires. Never put out a fire on the stove or oven with water, in case there's grease. Always keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen or know where the closest one is in the building.
If you need to catch a falling knife, always do so with your hands flat and clap them closed. (I did this once at work.)
Get a carbon monoxide detector.
Take a CPR class, especially if you have kids, and retake it every few years.
If you're hiking in the snow, doing some winter camping, or anything where you might be outside in the cold, don't drink alcohol. It's not making you warm, it's lowering your internal body temperature, putting you at greater risk of hypothermia.
If you are out in the cold without enough clothing, homeless, etc, buy a newspaper, crumple it up and put it under your clothes. The crumpled newspaper creates pockets of air that will help keep you warm.
Attach Your name-phone number-emergency contact-address to your coat/kid's coat
Never assume something is safe to eat because a deer/various other prey mammal ate it,they process some things different from us.
Always have something with you made from rope. You can get cool key chains, belts, etc. that are made from strong rope. Tie a car shut, can't quite reach a hand, "lasso" a dropped object...so may sticky situations made better with rope.
Note: this post originally had 61 images. It’s been shortened to the top 34 images based on user votes.