Over the last 12 months in the Permian Basin, we have had more injuries and deaths from car accidents than we had over the last several years combined. Odds are, if you drive anywhere, you will come up on one of these accidents before emergency responders. You may be the only thing standing between life and death for those injured.

My first bit of advice is to get some first aid training. You don’t need to know how to transplant a kidney, just some basic knowledge to bridge the gap. There are plenty of medical kits out there, some are also pretty expensive. My philosophy is the kit you have when you need it is better than the kit you don’t because you couldn’t afford it. Just a quick stop by a pharmacy or grocery store can get you basic items for survival on the cheap.

Since time is of the essence and I don’t like carrying more weight than I need to, my Med-bag contains only the things I would need to sustain life until medical help arrives or until I can get them to that care. My in-car medical bag also doubles as my ‘Range Bag’ used for the same purpose of treating slightly different traumatic injuries.

My Med-kit includes:

  • Medical scissors
  • Sutures (sewing kit) and hemostats
  • A scalpel
  • Tweezers
  • Bandages (compress and adhesive), gauze of various sizes
  • Superglue
  • Medical tape or Duct tape
  • Space blanket
  • Alcohol wipes
  • Anti-biotic (optional)*
  • Surgical gloves
  • Rope & Ties
  • Magnet
  • Tampons and feminine napkins
  • Saline spray

Examples of how these could be used, say for a very bad day at the range:

Justin-Sullivan, Getty Images
  1.  If the wound was a gunshot to the foot, leave the shoe on and use the shoe itself as a compression bandage to keep the appendage together. Duct tape is excellent for the wrap to slow bleeding.
  1.  If the bullet wound is located in a large muscle group, and the round of significant caliber, a tampon can be inserted directly into the bullet hole and as it expands it will stem the bleeding. The whole idea is to keep the victim alive long enough to get to trauma professionals.

Practice how you and your family or coworkers would respond to some of these scenarios with family members or coworkers with a qualified instructor. Just a little preparation can save a life.

Links to various DYI websites:






Red Cross Deluxe Trauma Responder Pack