It is possible to write a book about how famous superheroes survived in the most extreme of situations, for example, Robinson Crusoe and Rambo. But are all of the methods they used really safe and effective?
Bright Side has watched a lot of movies and decided that you should know about the things you shouldn’t do, if you want to survive.
Myth № 1: A cave is the perfect place to start a fire.
It seems to be safe and even romantic… The fire and the high temperature will heat the rocks. These rocks will expand when exposed to heat. And this can cause the rocks to fall on the person’s head. The only place you should start a fire is in a wide-open space outside.
Myth № 2: You can eat raw fish you have just caught. People eat sushi all the time.
The only thing that the movies don’t show is a potential digestion disorder caused by bacteria and microorganisms. Since there’s no first aid kit or ambulance in the wild, don’t take the risk — cook any fish you’ve caught over a fire. By the way, the same goes for the raw blood of animals. Ewww…
Myth № 3: You can throw a grenade and it won’t make a sound.
In reality, after activating a grenade, a firing pin inside of it makes a sound. This is why it’s really important to throw the grenade right after you activate it — not only because of the explosion but because of the pin — it can even damage your arm. Not a single action movie shows this aspect and this is exactly what delays the actual explosion by 3-4 seconds.
Myth № 4: You can use a tourniquet in order to save a limb.
No, you can’t. What you can do is make such a tight knot that the tissue will not have any blood circulation in it and the limb will have to be amputated. Besides, it can also lead to a heart attack in some cases. Try to stop the bleeding by taking the appropriate body position and pressing on the vessel in the injured spot.
A tourniquet is used only when the bleeding is too fast and it’s a matter of saving the person’s life and not their limb.
Myth № 5: Watching a TV show about survival in extreme situations will prepare you for a real situation.
Of course, this is not true. Don’t forget that TV shows are made by a team of dozens of people who are never on the screen. Including, rescue teams that are ready to help at any moment. And also, there are directors and editors who are always ready to edit the film and make everything look beautiful after the shooting. But in reality, everything is very different.
The reality is harsh: you just need to survive and find people, without cameras, photo shoots, and people’s comments on social media.
Myth № 6: Boiled water is 100% safe to drink.
Boiling only kills germs and bacteria but doesn’t make the water clean from harmful elements. For example, it doesn’t matter how long you boil muddy water — it won’t ever be safe to drink. So, before boiling it, filter the water through a clean piece of fabric (like a towel or a shirt) and let it sit until the dirt settles to the bottom.
Myth № 7: If you are lost, you should go down river and, sooner or later, you will find people.
Exactly — “sooner or later” are the key words here. Of course, people really do settle near rivers because they need water but… It might take weeks before you come across any settlement (just look at a map of Siberia and the Far East). And you also need to make sure you are warm and safe.
This is why the first rule is: If you get lost, stay where you are. This is the spot the rescue team will search for you first.
Myth № 8: Wet clothes are always better than no clothes.
Not always. For example, if the air temperature is below zero and you are wearing wet clothes (like if you went under the ice), they will cool you down. It takes a lot of time and energy to heat water. This is why it doesn’t feel as hot in cities near the sea or ocean, rather than in the cities in the middle of the continent.
The body will end up wasting its energy to heat the water in the wet clothes, instead of heating its own internal organs.
Myth № 9: The first thing you need to do in a desert is find a source of water.
No. First, you need to find shade and wait until the evening instead of wasting the water reserves in your own body. Try to find a big boulder and sit in its shade. Steer clear of the hot ground — it’s better to sit on a tree, or put something under yourself. And once it’s dark, you can start looking for stars, hotels, water, and Wi-Fi.
Myth № 10: You should save some water for later.
If you are thirsty, you should cool down, sit in the shade and drink. When you are exposed to sunlight and you suppress the need to drink, you can have a heat stroke and lose consciousness. And ironically, you will still have some water with you but you won’t be able to drink it.
Have you noticed any absurd episodes about survival in extreme situations in your favorite movies?
Illustrated by Anna Syrovatkina for BrightSide.me