Emergency Backpack BOB (Bug Out Bag): Complete Guide

We live in a time when extreme weather events and natural disasters are occurring more and more frequently, having a huge impact on our lives. There are not a few times that our fellow human beings were forced to leave their homes in a hurry, in order to stay safe.

The idea of having to evacuate our home due to a threat can be a realistic scenario for which we must be properly prepared, as lack of preparedness leads to panic and chaos. This is why it is important to have a family emergency plan.

Part of the family emergency plan is to prepare a Bug Out Bag, able to cover our basic needs for at least 72 hours, in difficult and adverse conditions.

What is a Bug Out Bag (BOB)

The “Bug Out Bag” (BOB) is derived from the term “bugging out”, which refers to the act of leaving one’s home due to an unexpected emergency. In other words, it is the emergency backpack, designed to provide the necessary supplies and equipment that one would need to quickly leave one’s home or current location in the event of an emergency. The BOB is designed to provide the essentials for survival for a few days, until someone can get to a safe place or find other solutions.

What should be included in the emergency backpack – BOB

Depending on the size of the backpack you choose, you can equip it with all or some of the following recommended items:

  1. Water
    • The human body can go without water for about 72 hours, and without food for about 3 weeks. One liter of water per day is recommended, per person, a total of 3 liters of drinking water for 3 days. Also, a collapsible water bottle is useful.
  2. Food
    • As with water, it’s a good idea to have food with you for at least 3 days. It is important that the food is long lasting and of high caloric and nutritional value. Such are protein bars (power bars), power meals and dehydrated meals. In case you choose to carry dehydrated meals or otherwise “survival foods”, you should consider that you also need a small metal cooking utensil. Also, a spork and a can opener can be useful.
  3. Clothing
    • Choose clothes that will keep you warm or cool, depending on the season. At least two changes of clothes ensure that you can always wear a dry set. In addition to 2 changes of clothes and underwear, it is good to have in the backpack, fleece jacket, waterproof jacket, work gloves, scarf or scarf, hat, work gloves.
  4. Sleeping and shelter items
    • Depending on the size of the backpack you choose, you can additionally equip it with a small tent (tarp), a small tent, a sleeping bag and an isothermal aluminum blanket.
  5. Heat source
    • It is good to have 3 different heat sources, just in case. Such can be: storm lighter, matches, Ferrocerium rod (survival spark).
  6. First aid box
    • Inside the first aid box, in addition to the rest of the contents, don’t forget to add any pharmaceutical preparations that you or a relative may need, as well as a first aid manual. Also, it’s important to have a document with your family’s medical history, including information about any existing allergies, chronic illnesses, and current medications.
  7. Personal hygiene items
    • Other essential items to bring are: toilet paper, wipes, hand sanitizer, small towel, travel toothbrush with toothpaste
  8. Other equipment and tools
    • Other items you may need are: led flashlight for lower battery consumption than classic flashlights, chemical lighting rods, radio, rope, whistle, multi-tool, insect repellent, wireless charger (power bank), some money, as it may be due to the emergency situation ATMs and banks do not work. It is also good to have copies of important documents such as ID, passport, driver’s license, bank account numbers, which will be needed, in case the originals are lost, during the crisis.

Preparedness is a way of life

Prevention and emergency preparedness is a way of life. The above list is a basic guide to the essential items a BOB backpack should contain, but it is equally important to learn how to use these items effectively and safely.

We, at the Hellenic Rescue Team, recommend that you also do your own personal research and turn to specialized stores when you decide to create your own backpack or get a ready-made one.