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Old 24-06-2015, 01:54   #1
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What do you have in your grab bag?

Apologies if I'm replicating threads, but a quick search doesn't show this.

I have a floating grab bag, kept in a cockpit locker to be the first supplement to the contents of my liferaft in the event of a catastrophe where i have only seconds to abandon ship.

Given that the space available is small, I am having difficulty prioritizing the contents and would be interested to hear what others have chosen. Do you pack and forget, or do you have a variety of packs for different circumstances - cruising areas or seasons?

Lionel
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Old 24-06-2015, 04:32   #2
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Re: What do you have in your grab bag?

Here's 2 opinions.
What to Put in an Abandon-Ship Ditch Bag
A Ditch Bag for Offshore Boaters | BoatTEST.com
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Old 24-06-2015, 05:50   #3
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Re: What do you have in your grab bag?

I don't have my bag in front of me, but off the top of my head I have:

-flares and flare pistol
- hand held flares
- glow sticks
-waterproof flashlight
-3 or 4 granola bars
-couple bottles of water (I sailor freshwater).
-helioscope
-space blanket x2
-disposable rain ponchos x2
-waterproof matches
-air horn
-couple whistles
-small first aid kit
-50' of buoyant line
-2 fleece toques
-folding RADAR reflector

This is all in quite a small waterproof bag too.

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Old 24-06-2015, 08:09   #4
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Re: What do you have in your grab bag?

I show my grab bag in this video... Nearer the end



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Old 25-06-2015, 18:52   #5
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Re: What do you have in your grab bag?

I've given about 100 Safety at Sea Seminars around the country, and I try to keep grab bag contents very simple. Yes, there will always be someone who wishes they had a particular item in the bag, but I think it's a mistake to put a ton of items in a bag that you will likely never need.

However, storing items that you would have anyway (flares, VHF radio) in the bag is a good idea. Also a good idea to have the crews' wallets and passports in the abandon ship bag.

My list:

1. Self locating EPIRB (internal GPS)
2. Handheld VHF, preferable with an alkaline battery pack and several extra sets of batteries.
3. Katadyn Survivor 06 watermaker OR and easily grabbed 5-gallon jug of water.
4. Any prescription medicines needed for short term survival.
5. Cheap reading glasses.

In my opinion, everything else is fine but non-essential.

What would I include from the ship?

1. Medical kit.
2. Flares
3. Any other signaling equipment.
4. Bag of high carb granola-type bars.

I think it's very unlikely that you'll be in a raft more than 36-48hours IF you have an EPIRB. First aid issues will kill you first, followed by hypothermia, followed by dehydration, followed by starvation. Virtually everyone can survive for three days without water, and certainly without food.

Chuck Hawley
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Old 25-06-2015, 18:56   #6
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Re: What do you have in your grab bag?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck Hawley View Post
I've given about 100 Safety at Sea Seminars around the country, and I try to keep grab bag contents very simple. Yes, there will always be someone who wishes they had a particular item in the bag, but I think it's a mistake to put a ton of items in a bag that you will likely never need.

However, storing items that you would have anyway (flares, VHF radio) in the bag is a good idea. Also a good idea to have the crews' wallets and passports in the abandon ship bag.

My list:

1. Self locating EPIRB (internal GPS)
2. Handheld VHF, preferable with an alkaline battery pack and several extra sets of batteries.
3. Katadyn Survivor 06 watermaker OR and easily grabbed 5-gallon jug of water.
4. Any prescription medicines needed for short term survival.
5. Cheap reading glasses.

In my opinion, everything else is fine but non-essential.

What would I include from the ship?

1. Medical kit.
2. Flares
3. Any other signaling equipment.
4. Bag of high carb granola-type bars.

I think it's very unlikely that you'll be in a raft more than 36-48hours IF you have an EPIRB. First aid issues will kill you first, followed by hypothermia, followed by dehydration, followed by starvation. Virtually everyone can survive for three days without water, and certainly without food.

Chuck Hawley
Seems in principle very similar to mine.



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Old 25-06-2015, 19:49   #7
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Re: What do you have in your grab bag?

Similar to ours although we also have a list attached to the bag in a ziplock bag that tells the bag grabber what else to grab and throw in the bag. Items we regularly use elsewhere. Satphone, gps, medical kit, handheld VHF etc
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Old 25-06-2015, 19:58   #8
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Re: What do you have in your grab bag?

Quote:
Originally Posted by monte View Post
Similar to ours although we also have a list attached to the bag in a ziplock bag that tells the bag grabber what else to grab and throw in the bag. Items we regularly use elsewhere. Satphone, gps, medical kit, handheld VHF etc
Good! I know the other stuff I should grab, but don't have it in a checklist.

Very smart Monte.

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Old 25-06-2015, 20:12   #9
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Re: What do you have in your grab bag?

All of the above plus an illustrated copy of the Kama Sutra.
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Old 26-06-2015, 02:23   #10
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Re: What do you have in your grab bag?

Thanks for all replies,

no great surprises, but the check list for additional items is something I hadn't thought of.

Regards.
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Old 26-06-2015, 03:18   #11
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Re: What do you have in your grab bag?

Quote:
Originally Posted by FamilyVan View Post
I don't have my bag in front of me, but off the top of my head I have:

-flares and flare pistol
- hand held flares
- glow sticks
-waterproof flashlight
-3 or 4 granola bars
-couple bottles of water (I sailor freshwater).
-helioscope
-space blanket x2
-disposable rain ponchos x2
-waterproof matches
-air horn
-couple whistles
-small first aid kit
-50' of buoyant line
-2 fleece toques
-folding RADAR reflector

This is all in quite a small waterproof bag too.

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Ensure the bottled water isnt Full. That way the bottles will float if dropped.
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Old 27-06-2015, 20:19   #12
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Re: What do you have in your grab bag?

put beer in it, it will float, and your spirits will be higher.
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Old 30-06-2015, 07:49   #13
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Re: What do you have in your grab bag?

I include a USB thumb drive containing scanned copies of all documents and credit cards (front and back). You can then print hard copies of everything at the business center of the hotel you finish up in.
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Old 01-07-2015, 19:13   #14
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Re: What do you have in your grab bag?

Quote:
Originally Posted by edmundsteele View Post
I include a USB thumb drive containing scanned copies of all documents and credit cards (front and back).
Great idea!

One thing I focus on is warm clothes (hats and polypropylene thermals) and thermal protection aids.

Surviving that first cold night when wet is going to be the biggest challenge in anything other than tropical waters.

Some high energy food can help when cold. Standard survival texts say no food or water on the first day, but If I was starting to get hypothermia I would definitely eat some of the food right away.

I also like the idea of a cheap cell phone with camera in a waterproof case. Or even a small waterproof camera to document the whole thing for magazine articles. Might help earn some extra cash!

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Old 01-07-2015, 19:21   #15
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Re: What do you have in your grab bag?

I also pack a personal grab bag that lives near my pillow. In It I have some warm clothes, a head torch, snack and drink bottle. Plus wrapped up valuables, phone, book etc. It's handy for regular use, and in an emergency If I'm asleep, I can quickly find some warm gear. I encourage all my crew to do similar.

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