Do you know the important role a survival blanket plays in your disaster preparedness plans? Do you have the right blanket for your climate and lifestyle? No matter what time of year, you should always be prepared for a cold snap. These items are not perishable, so once you’ve acquired them, you’re set.
How Do Survival Blankets Work?
The important job of a survival blanket (also called a space blanket) is to increase your odds of surviving in extreme conditions. Most survival blankets are tear resistant and have some type of reflective material on the outside of them. Some can also be used in water to help lock your body heat in.
They can be made of various materials and are extremely portable with most of them folded into a shape about the size of an adult’s hand. They can serve many different purposes in order to help save your life.
Lightweight blankets are made of material that’s intended to keep the rain or other elements off of you. They help keep out the chill, but they’re not good if you’re going to be somewhere windy or snowy, or if you need to use a blanket as an emergency shelter.
A heavy blanket can be used to create a way to keep the elements off of you and can be rigged up over tree branches as a way to make a shelter. You’ll get a protective barrier against wind, rain and even driving sleet.
Survival blankets come in different sizes, widths and colors. One of these colors is bright orange, which makes it easier for you to be found in the event that a rescue is needed. When blankets come in different colors, get the orange one.
Types of Survival Blankets
There are several types of survival blankets out there – also called space blankets – and the choices can be confusing once you start digging into it a bit more. Here’s what you need to know:
1. Lightweight Thermal Blankets
Lightweight thermal blankets are specifically designed to keep you alive in very cold conditions. These are self-heating blankets that use your body’s own heat to generate the warmth you need. These are recommended for folks who may encounter a snowstorm – and for those in the US, that’s many of us. These are the original “space” blankets and are a good value at Amazon where they are highly rated. They are very lightweight and you would only use these to wrap around your body.
2. All weather blankets
All weather blankets are also known as “survival blankets.” They can deflect heat or hold heat in even in below zero weather. This kind of blanket is good to have in the event of a major disaster like a hurricane or snowstorm if you live in the colder states and lose your electricity during winter months. The all weather blankets are strong enough to double as a shelter. Placed in the bottom of a tent, they can protect you from the cold or wetness of the ground.
Here’s my favorite one: it’s a nice mid-weight blanket – not so heavy that it takes up a lot of room in your car trunk, and it’s good for hiking. Just make sure you order the one in orange.
3. Heat reflective sleeping bags
There are also heat reflective blizzard survival sleeping bags designed for use in extreme cold by Special Operations forces worldwide. They come in tactical olive drab and are reversible to silver color for emergency signalling to help you get rescued if needed.
Please make sure you have at least one of these survival/space blankets in each car your family drives, and several in your home. There’s no better way to keep yourself warm and alive in a cold-weather survival situation.