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What are 5 pocket-sized items, I can board a plane with, that would help with survival?

survival airline airplane aircraft crash rescue

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#1 mikejulietpapa


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Posted 23 January 2013 - 06:13 PM

I was on Reddit the other day and saw an interesting thread.

What are 5 pocket-sized items, I can board a plane with, that would help with survival?

I really like the idea. Even though the chance of a crash in general are low, it's probably a good idea not to rely on your checked bag or even what's under your seat.

So... what would you bring with you?

#2 Davis


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Posted 23 January 2013 - 06:56 PM

Attached File  Jet Carry.jpg   137.18KB   9 downloads

Not trying to turn this into a photo contest, but I figure pictures are cool and I like to see what other people carry.

Pictured are 5 things that I always have on my person when traveling by commercial airline:
  • Fisher M4 Space Pen
  • Columbia Basecamp Watch
  • Surefire E2D Defender (pre-LED)
  • Standard Para-Cord bracelet
  • Oakley polarized Flack Jacket XLJ

Not pictured but always on my person is also my wallet and my iPhone. My favorite of the above items is the E2D with the sharp bezels on both ends.
I should also note, that my "ECD" for commercial air travel is more with the mind set of what I can have on my person to use in the even of surviving a potential hostile situation in the air. The odds of surviving a crash of a large airliner in a remote area is very slim, and if I did survive I think I could have a pretty good go at scavenging survival items from the wreckage before departing the crash scene. I also have spent a lot of time flying in small planes and helicopters and when I fly that way, I bring much more in the way of survival items.

I just had this thought as I am typing this... Do you think you could get away with having steel wool and a 9v battering in your carry on? Perfect fire starter in a survival situation?

Edited by davis.agd, 23 January 2013 - 07:03 PM.


Put good in, get good out. 

#3 sgcaper



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Posted 23 January 2013 - 08:16 PM

This is a cool topic.

I'd have my keychain, which I'll count as one item, on it are: small roll duct tape, gerber artifact tool (xacto blade removed), paracord, streamlight flashlight.

I'd also bring:

lighter / matches.

That's really it in my pockets as all my other TSA allowed EDC items would be in my carry on shoulder bag under the seat.

#4 iExpresso


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Posted 23 January 2013 - 08:49 PM

If i survived a crash, what would have i liked to have on my person. Well, i would take a extra pair of underwear. Cause id probably have had pooped my pants. And a couple unscratched off lottery tickets. That is if i survived, it would be the luckiest day i'd have. A small mirror, to check my beard growth while waiting for rescue. Last but not least, a soccer ball named wilson to keep me company.

Just sayin...

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#5 M-Ful



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Posted 23 January 2013 - 09:49 PM

Ive traveled alot and Ive always managed to make it through secutiry with a ferro rod and striker, tool logic key card in my wallet with a small KNIFE (yeah I couldnt believe it either), scissors, and other small tools but dont push it though, a trauma kit with hemostatic agents in it, and a flashlight. I always carry a metal water bottle (Hydro-Flask) through empty and then fill it up after I pass security. I usually take one of my small survival kits and gut all the restricted items. Also a couple garbage bags and gorilla tape re-rolled flat always ride in the bottom of my bag, theres an infinate number of uses for those two items, especially if used in conjunction. If there is a crash you'r first survival priority is to get the hell out so items to help you egress should be kept close at hand, I keep a respirator mask, Mechanix Wear gloves, and sunglasses in the outside pocket. Yes I know thats more than five, oops!

#6 Lao


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Posted 24 January 2013 - 07:18 AM

I flew for 20+ years in the Air Force and have never been afraid of crashing... had a few close calls during NVG Low Level in the mountains... In the Air Force we always had gear with us, survival, etc... However, flying as a Civilian, this is a great post. I've never even thought about carrying the simplest gear with me to help out in case of emergency.
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#7 jinx667


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Posted 28 January 2013 - 05:04 AM

I already wear a watch with a compass and a paracord bracelet. I would think a signal mirror, flint striker and med kit would round out a decent top 5.
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#8 TearsOfNorris



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Posted 28 January 2013 - 04:42 PM

This is all part of my daily EDC already. The only things that go away for TSA are the pocket knife and the credit-card pick set, but here are my top 5 TSA-approved items in no particular order:

1. Cordage. 7' wrapped in a monkey's fist (on my keys). The rest of my monkey's fist lanyard (9' more 550 cord) goes in my carry-on bag (see EDC for runners post for description of lanyard). Fist+lanyard makes a good gear hanger and line-tosser, but I also use it as a luggage strap to keep a rolling bag and backpack lashed together when hiking across parking lots. Even if I did lose the lanyard portion with my carry-on during a crash, I also have another 6' of paracord on the flashlight in my pocket (two is one and one is none).

2. 20 feet of 100 lb spectra fishing line w/ needle in my wallet. Great for ad-hoc clothing and shoe repair, small game snares, general-purpose cordage, etc.

3. duct tape flat pack in wallet. no explanation necessary

4. paracord-wrapped flashlight. no explanation necessary

5. lock picks/calipers on key chain (qualifies as a "tool" for TSA purposes: they are fully functional map calipers and very useful for good old-fashioned map nav). This is actually just two hacksaw blades and a rivet, so if I do ever lose it to the TSA, I can just make another one in about an hour for less than $5. The tension tool goes in my wallet, and I always carry a pen with a cap clip that makes a decent tensioner in a pinch. explanation: Blankets and other items are sometimes kept in a locked luggage bin. It's a simple wafer lock, which is [presumably] easy to pick, but after a crash, what's behind that lock could save a life.

5 1/2. (because it is under my feet in the carry-on bag and NOT in my EDC). small first aid kit. TSA-approved, and good for boo-boos, but not so great for fixing plane crashes.

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