When I first started prepping, a vehicle survival kit was one of the first things I put together. Anything can happen, and if it does while you’re out and about, a 72-hour survival kit in your vehicle will help you feel more at ease and could possibly save your life.
A 72-hour kit is essentially filled with items that will meet your basic survival needs (food, water, safety, shelter) for at least 3 days time. The items placed in the kits should be lightweight and functional so that, if need be, carrying the kit will not be a strain due to unnecessary items.
If you’d like to build your own kit, there are several things you should consider. Take into account the likelihood of having your family with you. If you have kids or pets who ride in your vehicle often, it’s a good idea to prepare for them too, especially considering this is a great way to prep for an emergency evacuation as well. There will be extra items that you should add if that’s the case. To start your kit, use a heavy duty large backpack and fill it with:
- 3 Day Supply of Food
- Water – 3 Day Supply
- Water Purification Tablets
- Emergency shelter and/or bivvy sack
- Extra batteries
- Rain poncho
- Work gloves
- Knife or multi-purpose tool
- Chains for tires (specific to the tires on your vehicle)
- Collapsible shovel
- Air compressor (to air tires)
- Extra tire (most vehicles have these already)
- Waterproof matches or a lighter
- Signaling devices such as a flare, mirror, whistle, or glow sticks
- Extra clothes which are compatible with the season you are in
- Hand and foot warmers (optional but very effective if you need to be in the cold weather for a long period of time)
- 2 extra pairs of socks
- Extra jacket
- Toiletries (Toilet Paper, Soap, etc.)
- First aid kit
- Survival book
- Maps and navigation devices (compass, GPS device, etc)
- Two-way radio
- 5-10 gallons of extra gasoline
Keep in mind, excellent already created kits can be purchased if starting from scratch isn’t ideal. However, you might want to add things like three days worth of prescription medications if you take any, along with other things you could need. I have an extra pair of waterproof hiking boots in my vehicle just in case I’m stranded and wearing improper footwear. Those are only two of the possible additional things to consider as they are never something a premade kit will come with.
It’s a good idea to periodically check your vehicle bag and all the contents to be sure items are still functioning properly. If you’ve added things such as prescription medications, you’ll want to be aware of their expiration date and replace them accordingly. If you use something from your vehicle’s kit, you will also want to replace it as soon as possible. Check the lighters and make sure the fuel hasn’t leaked out and ensure they work.
There is a lot of extra work that goes into preparing a vehicle survival kit. I have one in all of my family’s cars and going this extra mile will give you some peace of mind. Anything can happen an accident, a broken down vehicle, or an emergency evacuation. Make sure you’re prepared!
Share your suggestions on a vehicle survival kit with our readers in the comments!
Something up? Russian sub has major accident. 12 dead. Pence cancels speech and returns to D.C. for urgent meeting. Coincidence? Get your preps while you can.
There’s another rumor that a US sub was sunk in US waters by the damaged Russian sub. Of course Pense was recalled, and promptly sent to a bunker separated from POTUS. How serious is this? Where is Trump right now.
What was the Russian sub doing in US waters, tapping underwater communications cables?
Saw comment in Breitbart talking about Russian sub fire. 14 dead, US sub sunk near Alaska. VP Pence’s plane makes emergency landing and Pence meeting with EU officials.
Why does the kit/bag have to have a time frame attached to it. Suppose you’re never coming back or can’t get back. At the end of 72 hours will you just curl up in a ball? My stuff is packed with items and food (food starting out and then will have to look for food as expected). I’m not one to short sheep my gear. A lot of my items have uses that are one that can perform quite a few tasks so that allows you to cut back on pack weight. When you buy an item to carry in your pack make sure its something that can perform more than just one task.
Some of you might already have paracord in your pack. Get some tarred bank line. Very strong and is coated. Prices are in the range of the paracord. There are two types of bank line, braded and twisted. The braided cannot be un braded whereas the twisted can be untwisted and a single strand can be used for fishing line. I carry both as they take up little space. It is impervious to water due to the coating.
“short sheep” ……….. ?
This is not a BOB. It is a survival bag for your vehicle in case you are stranded. I suppose, depending on the distance, it could be a “get home bag”.
Make sure you get a waterproof compression bag for your extra clothes and other small items. They will float if you have to cross a creek or stream. and still keep your contents dry. ’bout the only thing I use redundancy in is fire making and those items are small.
In addition….. put a roll of “Gorilla” tape in your kit for at least making repairs.
I love this site and your advice and it’s one of the first prepping sites I ever found, but how many years now have you been predicting the end of the world? I’m sure you’ve put a lot of people on medication waiting.
Off subject – just need to vent
Freedom of speech is done the socialist/communist have taking over.I just got banned from Breitbart –
Its getting close – Ammo up and get angry
even hre – my post went to moderation – Its getting real scary folks
poly tarp – blue or camo depending on your mindset >>> don’t leave home without one …
Hot showers, buffet, and streaming movies. Catapult and jetpack.
I think, any little thing would be priceless, during an inconvenience.
But, it is best to know how to make do, with nothing. Know where basic things come from and how to make more of it.
Dang, everybody must be out buying fireworks or something
How You Should Build a 72-Hour Survival Vehicle Kit…….
by clicking our shameless Amazon links and buying.
SHTFPLAN = 99.9% carbs, 0% fiber.
There should be enough cash in that bag to fill your gas tank at least once, and pay all tolls between home and your possible bug out locations. In a store that sells travel stuff, buy a hidden wallet. The kind that clips inside your clothing to deeply conceal some cash and credicards. In the SHTF, split off some cash and credit cards and hide it well. I use one of these whenever I travel. My neighbor got his pocket picked vacationing in Rome, it can screw up your whole trip. It would be worse in the SHTF.
72 hours means you don’t really need food, anyone who is basically healthy can go three days easy, but water is mandatory. Have a couple long burning candles, under a tin cup they can melt ice to drink. Warming cold water saves body heat, or let’s you make a cup of tea.
Clothing should be in three packs: winter, summer, and spring/ fall. Change them out per the season.
Have a half gallon big mouth bottle, it can be used to carry extra water and when empty, use it to pee in. Truckers do this all the time.
A couple of extra large trash bags can be used as a barrier against cold, or put your entire BOB in them tied tight to cross a river or lake. Having something that floats to hug keeps you warmer and you can swim further, plus it keeps your stuff dry.
Carrying extra gas daily increases risk to self and family. Just try to keep your tank always at least half full and have cash to fill the tank.
I’m thinking this is a generic 72 hour kit. I have a separate evacuation list for a “pack up the car and evacuate major disaster”. That will take about 15 minutes to load up, it’s all staged, one shelf in my pantry that holds normal use rotated foods and personal supplies that have been specially selected and are always kept together, next to my tool box is my bug-out tool bag. A tub holds a complete basic camping supply set. I always have gas cans to grab, DOT law says you can carry up to six 5 gallon red cans.
PTPO ~ I would love to see the complete list of everything in your preps for “pack up the car and evacuate major disaster”.
If Mac would allow it, I would even like to see you pen a comprehensive article on this topic, complete with various storage methods for different groups of supplies; items that you tested and eliminated or replaced; total weight and cubic feet…. everything.
This sounds like a great subject that can really help people; and it would be a welcome relief from all the political stuff.
that list is a great place to start. add:
thermal underwear is a must in my bag
hatchet axe or bowsaw
tire plug kit, forget the fix a flat
towstrap, and a way to secure it to both vehicles
i just had a flat on my trailer last night, 75 miles from home…had the jack, handle, tool bag, a cinder block to drive onto so i could GET the jack under the trailer, and a spare, and no, cars don’t have spares anymore, sometimes.
firestarter and dryer lint. hemp rope or sisal rope works very well too….a very good ferro rod can be had at
fire-fast dot calm
go to the site and they have great youtubes there on making a fire…also a lil history on ferro rods. i bought one at lancaster gun show last weekend, because of how well they are made, and how long they will last. they are trying to get them in scout-stores. good people. ….btw, a file (or even the serrated part of your knife-blade)works very well to throw them sparks, when it REALLY counts, like when you just crawled out of a river, or are in one of my scout’s firebuilding contests.
Passed a guy the other day on the side of the road, he had a super Jerp with all the go anywhere mods, he had two flat tires and one spare…… Oops!
With that tire inflator on the article list, have a patch kit and extra tire plugs.
After a neighbor got his second flat in his second $800 run flat tire. The dealer said they were going to try plugging it, what’s the worst. It is a run flat? Hmmmm!
Extra socks and underwear.
Pair of waterproof shoes/boots.
Sleeping bag ( good quality).
Bottled vegetable juices.
Deck of cards and something to read.
Wristwatch with date (old fashioned battery run not computerized).
Sign that says SOS or HELP.
Orange reflector if in snow.
Red cloths to tie to trees to make a trail to follow.
Binoculars to look for north star and good compass.
I might take a small burner with a small propane tank (if there’s room).
A waterproof tent that folds up flat and sets up just by twisting it.
Battery run heater. Rubber hot water “bottle”.
Hard tack (Civil War rations) made of flour, salt and water and baked in oven at 200 to 250 for four to six hours until dry and hard.
Gasoline and warm pants.
Extra vests, sweaters, parkas, blankets and plenty of booze (in the trunk); little paper cups, paper plates, paper bowls as well as regular metal utensils and plastic disposable cutlery.
Cast iron frying pan and Dutch Oven.
Light weight pots and perculator coffee pot with #10 can of coffee and some instant coffee, sugar, dried milk and canned milk.
Chocolate, candy, trail mix, dried fruit.
Canned meals (ravioli, pork & beans, soups, etc.
Salt & Pepper, garlic and onion powder, and bottle of mixed Italian spices or your favorite mixed spices.
30 to 90 days of baby food and juice. Dried milk, formula, 3 or 4 baby bottles, some diapers and safety pins. (Even if you don’t have a baby).
If near water, a fishing tackle box and collapsible fishing pole.
Hunting rifle and hunting knife if near the forest.
Prepaid airline tickets.
Flashlights and lamps.
Ginger & anti-nausea meds if you need to go by boat.
A wish and a prayer.
No Battery Jump Pack and 200W [or greater] power Inverter??? One of these saved my behind in Winter in Maine once.