Hurricane kit essentials, Part II


In Part One of this story, published Monday, we looked at some unique recommendations designed to bolster a well-stocked hurricane survival kit.

My newspaper recently published its annual 2013 Hurricane Guide, which is a great place to start researching how to assemble your kit.

Here are some more suggestions, which you’re not likely to find in most hurricane guides.


Mil-spec eye pro is mandatory for a hurricane kit, given the likelihood of flying debris. Staff photo/ Lee Williams

With the potential for 125 mph winds, horizontal rain and other hazards, I strongly recommend good eye protection. I stock my kit with mil-spec eye pro. They’re cheap, easy to find at most gun shows and capable of stopping high-speed spall and ballistic threats, so they are perfect for your hurricane kit.

Staff photo/ Lee Williams

You can’t have too many white lights or batteries in your hurricane kit. Staff photo/ Lee Williams

White lights, like food, are one item you can’t overstock. I prefer Surefire or Streamlights, but my kit contains several different models. If you’ve spent time in the field, you will appreciate the utility of a head-mounted light. My kit has dozens of 3V batteries, which are becoming more common but can still be somewhat tricky to find. Make sure one of your lights has a red filter, as it will not kill your night vision. Remember, it will take 30 minutes or more for your night vision to return after just a brief exposure to a white light. One of the biggest tactical mistakes I’ve seen is the overuse of white light. Use it sparingly, or not at all, if it can be avoided.

Staff photo/ Lee Williams

East German ‘splinter pattern’ shelter halves are cheap, durable and compact. Staff photo/ Lee Williams

After a hurricane, the  last thing I plan for me and my family is sleeping outdoors. Either we hunker down and ride it out in our home, or we displace to a shelter or hotel. However, that doesn’t mean we’re not prepared. In addition to several tents, I have stocked four East German shelter halves/ponchos. Those of you old enough to remember the two Germanies will recall the camo pattern. The difference between the East German model and the US shelter half is that the German model can be worn as a poncho. They cost around $5 on the surplus market, and come with stakes, poles and cordage.

Staff photo/ Lee Williams

The Portuguese sniper veil has many uses in addition to offering great concealment. Staff photo/ Lee Williams

One piece of kit I would never leave behind is a sniper veil. It redefines ‘multi-use.’ It can be used as a field-expedient sling, a sweatband, a tourniquet, bandage, belt, sun shade and of course for concealment. Add a few leaves, throw it over your head and you will disappear. British and Portuguese models seem to work the best.

Staff photo/ Lee Williams

Survival Tabs offer three days of nourishment in a container that will fit in a canteen cover. Staff photo/ Lee Williams

In addition to canned goods, MREs, freeze-dried food and Spam, of course, my hurricane kit contains several bottles of Survival Tabs. One bottle offers an adult enough calories for three days, at 12 tabs per day. The container is small enough to fit in a canteen cover. They cost around $20, and have a 10-year shelf life. The taste isn’t bad, better than most high-cal survival foods.

Staff photo/ Lee Williams

This British Army vest will stop frag, and most handgun rounds. Staff photo/ Lee Williams

Body armor is a personal decision, but when you need it, it’s nice to have around. There are two basic types, ceramic plate and flexible, usually made out of Kevlar or Spectra. Ceramic plate armor will stop most rifle rounds. Flexible body armor will stop most handgun rounds. Plate armor is heavy and will beat you to death if your don’t have a good carrier. Flexible body armor is somewhat easier to wear, but not by much. Body armor is hot, sticky and will restrict your breathing. If you wear it for an extended period of time, proper hydration is a must.

Staff photo/ Lee Williams

Good binoculars and spotting scopes should be light and small enough to carry for an extended period of time. Staff photo/ Lee Williams

I have two criteria for binoculars: small and light. The same rules apply for spotting scopes. Unless I’m going to the range, I leave the large-magnification binos and scope in the safe. I like binoculars which are small enough to fit in a pocket or pouch. Large models are too clunky and always seem to get in the way.

Staff photo/ Lee Williams

Bleach has many uses during a survival situation. Staff photo/ Lee Williams

Bleach is one of the most important items for a hurricane kit. Like batteries, you can’t stock too much. A cap full of bleach can purify water for drinking. It can disinfect nearly anything. If you sprinkle bleach on trash or waste, it will keep critters at bay. A bleach solution can be used to treat minor scrapes to ward off infection, which can be lethal during a survival situation.

Here’s to hoping we never need our hurricane kits! Please let me know if there’s anything I left out.


About Author

Lee Williams can’t remember a time in his life when he wasn’t shooting. Before becoming a journalist, Lee served in the Army and worked as a police officer. He’s earned more than a dozen journalism awards as a reporter, and three medals of valor as a cop. He is an NRA-certified law enforcement firearms instructor, an avid tactical shooter and a training junkie. When he’s not busy as a senior investigative reporter, he is usually shooting his AKs, XDs and CZs. If you don’t run into him at a local gun range, you can reach him at 941.284.8553, by email, or by regular mail to 1777 Main St., Sarasota, FL 34236. You can follow him on Twitter: @HT_GunWriter and on Facebook @The Gun Writer.

1 Comment

  1. Pingback: how to purify water with bleach

Leave A Reply