Bug-out Bag Fail…

Last weekend, I had an eye-opening experience.  Without any notice, I found myself overnight in a hospital with a family member.  The next morning, (knowing I had my bug-out bag in my car,) I went to grab a fresh change of clothes, a toothbrush, etc.  Going through my bag, I came to realize I wasn’t as prepared as I thought I was.  I had a toothbrush…but no toothpaste.

Now, I don’t believe this to be a big fail.  Indeed, if the apocalypse would have hit, I wouldn’t have really cared about not having any toothpaste in this bag…but here’s the realization that I had: The purpose of this bag was to be prepared for many kinds of emergencies…not just the TEOTWAWKI kind.

In this case, it was a sudden medical emergency within my family.  It was one of those emergencies that could happen to anyone, at anytime, anywhere. The rest of the world went on just fine without noticing.  But as for me, things would have been a lot more ideal if I had been more prepared.

So here are some thoughts:

  • Go through your emergency kits/bags every so often to make sure they are well stocked, up to date, and season appropriate.
  • Think through what you would need for a variety of emergencies. You may be well prepared to evacuate or spend time in the bush, but are you also prepared to handle emergencies when the rest of the world is functioning mostly as normal?  For example, could you go to work the next day without going home? What if a cyber attack (which also took place last weekend) took out the local ATM’s and gas pumps for a day…could you get home?  You may be prepared for more extreme emergencies, but are you prepared for the more common ones?
  • Keep in mind that on some days your EDC may not be enough. A good bug-out bag or “get home” bag will really be beneficial at those times.

Thankfully, at least I had an emergency supply in my car to handle most of what I needed.  But this was all a great reminder to often check and re-check just to be sure that I would have what I would need.  If you haven’t checked your kits lately, I would encourage you to do so…and if you don’t have any emergency supplies at all with you at all times, know that an emergency could happen when you would least expect it.  Put together one as soon as you can!


  1. That’s a great reminder. We just went through Hurricane Matthew and I realized I couldn’t find lighters or matches in my bag. Talk about fail. I also read that one guy keeps over $1000 on him every time he travels. Do you think this is a good idea?

    1. I have heard of people carrying cash like that before. It seems like a lot, but I can see where it may come in handy. I’m not sure if I would feel that secure carrying that amount around though…but that’s just me.

      I would love to hear more of your experiences with the hurricane. I believe there is a lot to learn from first hand experiences…both successes and fails. Glad you are safe and thanks for sharing!

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