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Bug-Out First Aid Kit

By John D. McCann


John With KitFirst of all, this is not really an article about building a First Aid Kit for a Bug-Out Situation. My wife, Denise, and I admit that we are not experts in First Aid and are not well versed in medical procedures. With that being said, we are capable of handling medical problems. We set up our First Aid Kits with those items that we know we can use, and know how to use. I have seen many kits that include everything up to and including a surgical instrument kit. We realize that if something major happens, and we can’t fix it, we die. We can live with that (no pun intended… well maybe a little).

Anyway, this is more about packaging a kit so it can travel with you and be useful at a bug-out location. It is a large kit and therefore, if you don’t have a vehicle (or your vehicle breaks down or runs out of fuel), it might have to be left behind. Of course we have a substantial first aid kit in our bug-out pack, so we would still have something. This type of kit could also be left at a bug-out location. It can be carried and therefore it can be taken to various areas at the bug-out location to handle problems around the perimeter, etc.

This article will not go into depth as to the type of supplies you should carry in your first aid kit. Again, this depends on your skill level, and I don’t believe in carrying a bunch of stuff I don’t know how to use. Base your kits on your skill level unless you know you have other people at your bug-out location who have the skill to use what you carry. I’m sure there will be some disagreement in this, but we must all do what makes us feel comfortable.

Anyway, I started with a Chinook Law Enforcement Medical Kit – All Hazards Waist Pack. It is made by Chinook Gear, Inc. and cost $106.49. Expensive but it provides a lot of room. It also provided me with the ability to compartmentalize various sections, which I always prefer. It measures 17″ x 11″ x 5″ and weighs 2lbs. 8 oz. empty. It was designed to be carried around the waist so the user could fold out internal pallets and have access to the contents. I personally didn’t like the extra large padded waist strap, as I was not going to be using it like a law enforcement field responder might. I wanted it to be a well packaged kit, so I used a butane hot knife and cut the waist strap portion off.

The other thing I would have liked it to have was shoulder straps running the length of the pack. I have a Blackhawk Stomp medical bag and it has shoulder straps running its length which are strapped in place. If you need them they are available. I plan on talking to Chinook about the possible modification. If not, it might give me something to do.

Let’s take a look at the bag. I will discuss some of the contents, but not much. Again, you need to set up your first aid kit for you and your skills.

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These two photos are from the Chinook Medical Gear website. They show the Chinook Law Enforcement Medical Kit - All Hazards Waist pack. The left photo shows the waist strap configuration and the right photo shows the bag open with the internal pallet folded out.

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This photo shows the Blackhawk "Stomp" pack discussed in the above text. It shows the shoulder straps that are attached to the pack with Velcro straps, but can be unstrapped and used as a pack. I would like to see the Chinook pack with this option.

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This shows the front of the Chinook bag closed.

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This shows the back of the bag. You can see where I cut the waist straps off.

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This photo shows the bottom section unzipped. It has shelter items for hyper/hypothermia, stuff for strains and sprains, ice packs, etc.

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This shows the bag opened at top with my own removable pallets still in place.

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This pallet is in the very top which has EMT shears and over a dozen sets of Defender "T" olive green Nitrile gloves.

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This is the next removable pallet (my own) which has wound care items. This a view from the top side.

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This is a view of the same pallet shown above, but from the other side.

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This one of the medicine pouches kept in an AlokSac.

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This is writing kit for taking medical notes and includes an additional flashlight.

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This is a view looking in the top after my additional pallets and pouches were removed.

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This is an internal section that has various sections with Velcro flaps. It allows you to separate various items and the section at the right has straps for various instruments.

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This is a large zippered compartment above the last section shown above. It is the full depth of the bag and holds a lot of stuff.

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The bottom of the photo shows a large internal pallet that folds out from the inside providing additional compartments.

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When the pallet shown in the above photo is folded out, it reveals this additional section inside.

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Closer view of the fold-out section shown two photos above.

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This shows an additional zippered compartment above the fold out pallet which is also full depth of the bag.

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This is another pallet I made that holds topical medicine and sets into the zippered compartment shown above.

Well there you have it. I think it is a great bag for the purpose I was looking for (Although I would like to see shoulder straps the full length of the back. This bag Is Big… It Is Heavy… but for a vehicle or Bug-Out location, it should work fine. I just wouldn’t want to humping it over a shoulder too far.

Hope you got something out of this. At least it provides another option for carrying a large first aid kit!

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