While most people have a hard time imagining themselves in a life or death situation, the truth is, these scenarios can happen to anyone. To help you navigate these treacherous situations, here are some potentially valuable tips for dealing with a variety of dangers you may encounter during your lifetime.
As reported by Business Insider, a recent Quora thread asked the question, “What (trivial) knowledge might save your life one day?” Here are some of the tips gathered from user responses.
Your Mind Can’t Deal with Texting and Walking
Many people would be surprised to hear that the human brain isn’t capable of both walking and using your phone. Both tasks require significant cognitive effort and, when you’re staring at a screen while heading down the road, “inattention blindness” could prevent you from processing objects in your path, such as cars or mall fountains, leading to an accident, injury, or even death. So, if you’re going to use your phone, it is best to do so when you’re still.
Adjust Your Vehicle’s Mirrors to Eliminate Blind Spots
If you adjust your car’s side mirrors to the point where you can just barely see the side of your vehicle, you can effectively eliminate most blind spots on the sides of your car. Then, just make sure the rearview mirror covers the area behind your vehicle, and you should be able to spot most potential hazards or other nearby cars with greater ease.
Since Heat Transfers Faster through Liquids than Gases, Staying Dry Helps You Stay Warm
It’s much easier to retain body heat in the cold if you are dry than if you are wet, so consider adding some wool clothing to your outdoor attire. The material is capable of absorbing more moisture, keeping it off of your skin and helping you stay warm.
Eating Snow to Rehydrate Should be a Last Resort
While eating snow does provide you with water, it takes a significant amount of energy to bring it up to the proper temperature and will ultimately cost you body heat in the process.
Don’t Immediately Inflate the Life Jacket if Your Plan Makes a Water Landing
Inflating the life jacket before exiting the plane means that, if water ends up in the passenger area, you may have trouble escaping the cabin due to the added buoyancy.
Head Downhill if You’re Lost
Most cities or towns were established near available water sources. Since water flows downhill, you are more likely to find assistance if you head in that direction.
It is Possible to Give Yourself the Heimlich Maneuver
You don’t necessarily need help from someone else if you are choking on an object, like a piece of food. Here is an explanation, provided by Naman Mitruka, of how to perform the Heimlich maneuver on yourself:
- Form a fist with your stronger hand below your rib cage and just above the navel. Place your other palm over the fist to push more firmly.
- Drive your fist in and up in the diaphragm area (the top of your stomach) forcefully and repeat several times till the object stuck in your throat is dislodged.
Keep Antihistamines in Your Wallet When Traveling to New Areas
Allergies are common and, when you travel somewhere new, you never know when you may encounter an allergen. This is especially true for outdoor activities, like hiking and camping, making it wise always to keep antihistamines on your person until you know for sure that you aren’t allergic to something in the area.
Understand the “Rule of Three”
Most limits of the human body can be easily remembered thanks to the “rule of three.” Typically, a person can survive without air for three minutes, without shelter in extreme conditions for three hours, without water for three days, and without food for three weeks.
Never Put Water on a Grease Fire
Adding water to a grease fire can actually cause the flames to shoot higher. Instead of using water, quickly turn off the burner to lower the heat, and cover the pot to limit the amount of available oxygen and begin smothering the fire.
If You Have Been Stabbed or Impaled on an Object, Don’t Pull It Out
By leaving the object in place, you can actually slow the rate of blood loss. Instead of removing the object, cover the wound and try to control the bleeding until you can get assistance from a medical professional.
Smoke Inhalation Causes More House Fire Deaths than Burns
If you find yourself in a house fire, stay low to the ground to help avoid as much smoke as possible.
Airplanes are More Likely to Crash within Three Minutes of Taking Off or Eight Minutes of Landing
Approximately 80 percent of crashes occur within that timeframe, so being especially vigilant during those times by being aware of your nearest exits can be beneficial.
If You Need Emergency Assistance in Public, Speak to an Individual to Bypass the Bystander Effect
Members of a crowd may be less likely to provide aid as they are functioning under the belief that someone else in the group is going to act. By speaking directly to a specific person, you are more likely to the assistance you require.
A Bright Flashlight Can be a Weapon
Flashing a particularly bright flashlight into the eyes or an attacker (especially when it is dark) can give you a chance to get to safety. Additionally, if you misinterpreted a situation as threatening, it’s a method that typically does no real harm, so you often won’t get in trouble for using the technique.
When Hiking, Use Fences or Streams to Find Civilization
If you are lost on a hike, following a fence or a stream may help you find assistance. Following water as it flows downhill can help you locate a population center while fences can help you find a structure or roadway.
Condoms Can be Used for Water Storage
Due to their highly elastic nature, a condom can store nearly one gallon of water.
Be Aware of Exits to Manage “Normalcy Bias”
People have a habit of thinking everything will be fine even in obviously dangerous situations. By preparing yourself with the idea that such a situation may occur, such as by identifying viable exits when in public places, you increase your odds of beating “normalcy bias.”