Thursday, February 21, 2013

A survival kit for experts at survival

Interesting details have emerged of the miniaturized survival kit carried by some US Special Forces troops.  Time reports:

SEALs aren’t supposed to find themselves in trouble that they can’t get out of. That’s why the Navy is seeking to buy 300 new survival kits for the Naval Special Warfare Development Group, sometimes known as Navy SEAL Team 6.

. . .

While Navy folks didn’t rush to answer Battleland’s questions about how much the kits are expected to cost, and if they’ve changed recently, it’s neat to peek inside to see what’s there.

But first of all, the SEALs have been known to wreck things. Like helicopters. So the survival kits – a complete kit includes both hard and soft cases — have to be able to endure SEAL abuse.

The hard case is 4-by-2-by-1.2 inches, weighing six ounces or less, and available in both “Desert Tan” or “OD/Forest Green.”

Beyond those particulars, the hard case shall be:

  • Capable of limited cooking without effecting the container finish (i.e. paint bubbling)
  • Capable of being used as a limited digging implement without affecting its ability to house contents (simultaneous function of digging and housing not required)
  • Shall have a weather resistant gasket able to keep out water during minor water immersion (i.e. river crossings, swimming)
  • Shall have a fastening system that is reuseable and secure to prevent accidental openings
  • Top surface of kit must have permanently affixed a 2” x 3” piece of loop fastener (i.e. soft side of velcro)
  • Ruggedized to take heavy abuse while carried without damage to inner contents
  • Case shall securely hold all items below without rattling or other noises

The article goes on to provide details of the kit's contents.  It's interesting reading for those of us (including yours truly) who are skeptical of commercial 'survival kits', and gives us a baseline of what the professionals use against which to compare civilian offerings.



Carteach said...

I recall a Boy Scout camping trip where survival merit badges were at stake. The challenge was to survive comfortably for two days and nights with no more than you could pack in a small belt pouch. No DIRECT means of fire were allowed (Matches or lighters)

I recall packing a 9v battery, some steel wool (makes fire), a knife, water purification tablets, a tin cup, fishing line and hooks, some spices, and as much twine as I could con them into allowing.

From that I built a shelter, a fire, a bed, had water to drink, and trout for dinner.

Old NFO said...

I'm betting Pelican is all over this one...

Toejam said...

I carry just one item sewn into my skivies:

An American Express Centurion Card. It's the only credit card accepted at brothels world-wide.

Where else would one want to "survive"?

Incidently, I never leave home without it.

Mikael said...

Some items I remember should be in a survival pack like this, from my old survival handbook my aunt gave me:
Razor blade, fishing line, hooks, water purification tabs, condoms(for carrying water), waterproofed matches and/or iron and magnesium rod, additional medicine depending on where in the world you'll be(antibiotics, malaria tabs, etc), and a bar of milkchocolate(excellent emergency food, if you can ration it, it'll keep you going for days).

Mikael said...

PS: When it comes to survival, out of shape people actually have an edge on the super fit soldiers, body fat matters! Indeed that chocolate bar is mainly to provide you with something to kickstart your metabolism, so your body will start burning those fat reserves. Also someone with lots of muscles burns more calories than a less muscular person...