Now, we know what you’re thinking. “Gas masks? Isn’t that overkill?”
Preparedness often seems like overkill during non-emergencies. However, the last 4 years we’ve seen two stark examples of our society getting blindsided by emergencies with little time to prepare:
Example A: the 2017 California wildfires. Before you knew it, respirators were sold out everywhere, leaving many without emergency escape protection.
Example B: COVID pandemic of 2020. Panic-buying led to respirators being impossible to source for preppers and other practical applications.
Both scenarios happened within the last five years. Who knows what’s around the corner resulting in the next respirator shortage?
That’s where companies like Parcil Safety come in. They’re in the business of making sure high-quality respirators are always in stock for Americans at affordable prices. To celebrate our partnership with this American-owned and operated company, we decided to write up a quick guide on respirators and 5 ways you can use them for outdoors or survival situations. WILDFIRE
As mentioned above, in 2017 there was a respirator shortage in California. 2017 was followed by the 2018 wildfire season which was even more deadly and destructive. 2018 was followed by 2020 which was even more deadly.
In 2021, we saw wildfires not only in California, but in Oregon, Washington, and surrounding states. Wildfires, while sometimes predictable, can happen in the blink of an eye wherever you live. One great way to stay prepared amid the unpredictable is to keep yourself and your family stocked with emergency escape respirators.
A full face respirator mask is a quick and easy way to perform emergency escape without inhaling toxic particles in the air, such as smoke and debris. Note: these full face respirators aren’t going to actively supply oxygen, so you want to escape the smoky situation as quickly as you can. Instead, they’ll help keep your lungs clear while you make your way to safety.
Similarly, if you live in an area with active volcanos, respirators can help protect you from volcanic ash.
BUG OUT/GET HOME BAG
Ever heard of a Bug Out or Get Home Bag? These bags are items everyone should have stored in their homes or vehicles (or both). Typically, your average bag will be packed with emergency essentials such as water filtration, emergency food supply, medical kits, weather protective gear, self-defense items, etc.
Respirators make a great addition to your emergency bag because, well – emergencies, that’s why. Aside from the environmental hazards we mentioned previously, other realistic emergencies include:
• civil threats/riot hazards (think, tear gas)
• chemical spills
• general pollution
• everyday viruses
The best gas masks for bug out bags are lightweight, durable, and impact-resistant, with filtration cartridges that can sustain a long unopened shelf-life.
Keeping a bug out bag fully stocked and ready for emergencies could help save your life or the life of someone you care about. At Battlbox, we have plenty of essentials to fill up your emergency supply, including fire starters, paracord, and emergency water storage.
IMPACT-RESISTANT FACIAL PROTECTION
A little impact-resistant facial coverage never hurt nobody – it could even save that mug of yours only your momma loves. For example, recently, a YouTube star Kentucky Ballistics almost died when a 50 caliber round exploded, shredding part of his face. If you like to live dangerously with a side of demolition and explosives, some impact-resistant facial protection would probably do you good.
In broader terms though, think of all the civil unrest we’ve seen recently in 2020 and 2021. Riots in major cities, fights breaking out in the streets – if there’s one thing in life that’s unpredictable, it’s people. You never know when you might be caught in a dangerous situation where you’re in the wrong place at the wrong time. Investing in some personal protection equipment like a heavy-duty respirator could – at the very least – save your vision. Or even your life.
HOW TO CHOOSE THE RIGHT RESPIRATOR FOR YOU
There are a ton of respirators on the market, from high-quality American-tested respirators to cheap knock-offs and counterfeit products.
With all the variety out there, here are some simple tips to consider when shopping for respirators:
• Pay attention to the company. Take a look at the company you’re buying from to make sure they’re legitimate. While we’re all for supporting American-made brands, the fact of the matter is that with today’s global economy, so many parts and items are sourced overseas. As long as the brand/company test their items according to American standards, you can pretty much trust it’ll get the job done.
• Something is better than nothing. You don’t have to invest in that super expensive tactical mask upfront. Half face masks, while not offering full face or eye protection, are typically less expensive and can offer a decent amount of protection during an emergency.
• Stock up on filters. OSHA says that filter cartridges should only be used up to 8 hours in extreme environments. Hopefully, you won’t be stuck in an emergency for 8+ hours, but once again, emergencies are unpredictable. It’s better to have extra replacement filters on hand than to go without. When buying a respirator, make sure you know what types of filters the respirator takes, and make sure those filters are readily available.
• Purchase reusable respirators over disposable. Reusable respirators are, obviously reusable, which means they’ll offer you a better return on investment in the long run. Reusable respirators are typically more durable and offer better protection overall than disposable ones.
• And finally, don’t be afraid to have several different masks. Organic vapor gas masks are great for everyday protection from scenarios like riots or wildfires. While nuclear threats aren’t likely anytime soon, it never hurts to own a mask rated for nuclear or biological protection. Those are obviously worst-case scenarios, but if we have been harping on anything in this article, it’s that life is unpredictable.
We hope this article was informative and that you’re able to take one step closer toward keep yourself and your family safe. Stay safe and be prepared!