If you’ve ever heat-sealed your own Mylar bags at home, then you know what an amazing and versatile material Mylar can be. These silvery bags come in many sizes and can be heat-sealed with a Food Saver (or similar) unit, a clothes iron, or even a hair-straightening flat iron. Once sealed, the bags are waterproof and impermeable to air, and they’re even rumored to be EMP-proof. I’m currently taking a more modular approach to my gear, so I recently built a single-use trauma kit and sealed it up for safe keeping. Here’s how I did it.
First, I cut the corner off a large Mylar bag that had been damaged and was unsuitable to be used whole. Next, I grabbed my kid’s hair-straightening iron. Then, I readied my medical gear. Trauma kits are meant to deal with major injuries and keep a gravely injured person alive until medical care can be reached. Since this kit was going to be packed up for the long haul, I only wanted to use items that wouldn’t expire or leak, so the QuikClot, wipes, and ammonia inhalants would have to be left out. Here’s what should last until doomsday:
4 – 3×4-in. non-stick gauze pads, for wound coverage
1 – 8×10-in. trauma pad, for wound coverage
1 – Crinkle gauze, for wound packing and to secure dressings
1 – Pair of non latex gloves, for protecting the first responder
1 – Roll of 1-in. tape, to tape down dressings
1 – Ace bandage, 2 in. x 5 yd., non-self-adherent, to apply pressure and secure dressings (Note: if you use self-adhesive bandages, the sticky element will eventually glue the roll together and ruin it.)
Now it’s time to seal it up. If you’re using the corner of a large Mylar bag, you already have two factory-sealed edges. Use your heat sealer to seal another edge to create a pouch. Next, use a permanent marker to label the kit and list its contents.
Slide all of your gear into the pouch and organize it evenly. If you’d like to vacuum-seal your pouch, add a 100cc oxygen absorber to the pouch. This will draw roughly 20 percent of the atmosphere from inside the sealed package and pull a nice vacuum on it after a day or two.
Your sealed trauma pack can be added to any of your first aid or survival kits. It’s also a very smart addition to a range bag or vehicle emergency kit. Now you’re better prepared for a serious scenario where someone is significantly injured. Hopefully, you’ll never need it.
Do you carry an IFAK or trauma kit? Let us know what you’re packing in the comments.