If you have an interest in and penchant for preparedness, you’ve likely heard your fair share of amazing survival stories. Stories demonstrate how people use their quick thinking and principles of preparedness to persist in the face of chaos and the unpredictable.
Maybe it’s the tale of a woman who got lost in a Hawaiian national park for over two weeks before being rescued. Or the account of a woman who accidentally drove off the side of a cliff and survived for days in her wrecked car on a deserted beach. Maybe it’s a family who became stranded at home with no electricity for days after a natural disaster struck their town.
Many of these survival scenarios include the pursuit of defeating the elements. Wind, rain, snow, and chilly temperatures are major threats when the worst happens. That’s why today, I’m going to share several of the lifesaving and valuable uses of one particular item that comes in handy during disasters: emergency blankets.
What Is an Emergency Blanket?
Emergency blankets are used to prevent heat loss in your body caused by thermal radiation, water evaporation and convection. You may have also heard them referred to as a first aid blanket, space blanket, Mylar, thermal, or weather blanket. And they aren’t only used in the survival community--astronauts, mountaineers, surgeons, and marathon runners also find emergency blankets to be useful in achieving their goals.
They may seem so simple that they are unnecessary to include in your preparedness kit. However, emergency blankets are multiuse items that can serve so many more functions than it was designed for. Especially when traveling or camping in the outdoors, multiuse items are invaluable as they save space and weight.
Additionally, emergency blankets are extremely affordable--making it easy and advisable to invest in at least a dozen of them. Read on to discover nine lifesaving ways they can come in handy if disaster strikes...
#1: Use them to stay warm and preserve body heat.
First things first, the most basic use of an emergency blanket is--as you may guess--as a blanket. When facing the elements such as wind, rain, and snow, you’ll want to have something durable and insulating to maintain your body heat and stay strong and focused in the long run. Not only can it keep your body warm, it can also be used to insulate the inside of shelters for additional heat.
#2: Use them to construct a shelter.
Of course an emergency blanket won’t do for a long-term shelter, but it can prove to be extremely useful in the short term. Using your emergency blanket, paracord, safety pins, and duct tape, you can easily construct a tent-like shelter to protect yourself from the elements if you find yourself stranded outside. Use the duct tape to reinforce the edges, and attach the corners to rope tied to the base of trees or other stabilized structures.
#3: Use them to cook food.
Whether you’re stranded at home during a power outage or lost in the wilderness on a camping trip, a solar cooker is always a major asset. Fortunately, many emergency blankets have the ability to reflect light--a necessary property when using a solar cooker. Line the inside of a solar cooker box with an emergency blanket, and you’ll have a lot easier job igniting the cooker.
#4: Use them as a flotation device.
If you need to cross a river or evacuate during a flood, having a flotation device will help you make the transit. However, we don’t always have a traditional flotation device at our disposal. An emergency blanket can be turned into an improvised flotation device--simply tie off the ends to create air space. Apply some duct tape to create an air bubble.
#5: Use them for trades and barters.
Multiuse items will be in high demand during disaster scenarios. Many people in your area may be ill-equipped, and you can trade them emergency blankets for food and other essential items you may be lacking or run low on.
#6: Use them to signal for help.
Putting the blanket on the ground and folding it in different shapes and patterns to communicate a message. As I’ve mentioned, emergency blankets are reflective. When you’re needing to signal for help from a long distance, reflectivity is key in catching potential rescuers’ attention. You can signal for help by either:
- Stringing it up on a tree or another high structure to create movement in the wind like a flag.
#7: Use them to grow food.
Growing your own food sources at home is a no-brainer for those in the preparedness community. Emergency blankets are useful in this regard as they can be used in grow rooms to reflect light and encourage plant growth. This is especially useful during the winter, when it’s generally colder and darker.
#8: They can be used to transport water.
We can’t survive for long without water. Finding and collecting clean sources of water is a must. For example, you can melt snow with your emergency blanket by placing small amounts on top of it in the sun, and then funneling it into a container. If folded right, you can use your blanket to transport water to and from natural water sources such as freshwater rivers.
#9: They can be used to mark your trail.
If you’re ready to invest in this multipurpose lifesaving item today, check out our Emergency Blanket by Colonial Concepts. This blanket is ideal for storing in your car, cabin, backpack, RV, or at home. Made of lightweight aluminized, non-stretch polyester, a unique fabric that reflects heat back to the body, this blanket is also... No matter what age you may be, you’re always at risk for getting lost when traveling in rural or wild areas. Marking your trail when trying to find your way back is always a safe measure to take. Cut your emergency blanket into strips and tie it to trees and bushes to mark a trail or path.
- Windproof and waterproof.
- Compact, portable, and easy to store.
- 84" x 52" when unfolded.
- Flexible and snug, even in freezing temperatures.
- Durable and long-lasting.
Stay safe, and have a great weekend. Order your emergency blanket supply before it’s too late! Now is the time to take every necessary step possible to protect yourself from the elements during an emergency situation. And the more you invest in multi-use versus single-use items, the easier things will be in the long run. Adding several emergency blankets to your emergency supplies is a no-brainer!
Please add other uses you know of for emergency blankets in the comments below.
Preparedness Advisor, My Patriot Supply