Be Prepared - How to Create a Ditch Kit (Grab Bag)

March 27, 2024 4 min read



What Exactly is a Ditch Kit?

A ditch kit, also referred to as a grab bag or abandon ship bag, is a compilation of indispensable supplies and survival tools specifically designed to sustain life in emergency scenarios. It's a ready-to-go kit that contains provisions for first aid, communication, shelter, navigation, and sustenance when you are forced to urgently evacuate your boat or abandon your current location in a crisis. Premium ditch kits are tailored to be rapidly accessed and allow swift transport of these vital items for at least 72 hours, helping the user survive and orchestrate their rescue. For maritime emergencies, Coast Guard regulations mandate properly equipped ditch kits on certain classes of boats, but they are undoubtedly an invaluable insurance policy for all vessel types and excursions.


The Universal Necessity of a Ditch Kit

Not only is a ditch kit a critical asset for boaters, but it also serves as an essential survival tool for adventurers, remote travelers, and anyone facing the unpredictability of nature. Whether you're navigating the open seas, exploring remote wilderness, or traveling in areas where help is not readily available, a well-prepared grab bag can be the difference between survival and disaster.

For Boaters

Mandatory for larger commercial ships, every boater, from leisure sailors to fishing vessels, benefits from having a complete ditch kit on board. Storms, fires, collisions, capsizing, or piracy can thrust even the most experienced captains and crews into perilous scenarios. In remote areas far from shore, where immediate rescue is not guaranteed, a well-stocked ditch kit provides crucial temporary provisions. It ensures survival until rescue when remaining aboard a stricken vessel becomes life-threatening.

For Adventurers and Outdoor Enthusiasts

Adventurers trekking into the wilderness, mountaineers facing harsh conditions, and explorers of remote locations also stand to benefit significantly from a grab bag. These kits can be tailored to land-based emergencies, including tools for navigation, shelter, fire-starting, water purification, and signaling for help. The unpredictability of weather, terrain, and potential for injury makes a ditch kit an indispensable part of any adventurer's gear.

For Remote Travelers

Individuals traveling in remote or politically unstable regions where the risk of being stranded or encountering dangerous situations is higher should also consider a ditch kit. For these travelers, the kit might include additional items for personal security, communication devices capable of sending distress signals over long distances, and essentials for sustaining health and morale in challenging circumstances.

For Emergency Preparedness

In the context of natural disasters or societal disruptions, having a ditch kit ready can provide individuals and families with the means to survive until conditions improve or help arrives. This includes urban dwellers who might face unexpected emergencies requiring them to be self-sufficient for several days.


Faraday Shielding: Critical Protection for Electronics

With increasing technological reliance, ditch kits must keep pace by shielding vulnerable electronics. GPS, satellite phones, emergency beacons, flares, and radios are common survival gear. But a sudden electromagnetic pulse (EMP) from a lightning storm or solar event can instantly destroy unprotected devices. Faraday cage shielding uses conductive materials to block electric fields, surrounding kit electronics in a protective RF-blocking barrier. This safeguards critical communications and navigation equipment from frying, ensuring it remains functional after you disembark from a vessel. Incorporating state-of-the-art Faraday shielding in a grab bag provides a heightened, indispensable level of preparedness.


SLNT's Submersible Cylinder Faraday Backpack

Faraday backpack

Designed for the rigors of maritime emergencies, the SLNT 40L Submersible Cylinder Faraday Backpack offers unparalleled durability and protection:

  • Fully Submersible: Its waterproof construction ensures reliability even 100 feet underwater.
  • Inflatable Flotation: The backpack can be manually inflated to float, keeping your essentials within reach.
  • Integrated Faraday Cage: A removable insert provides military-grade protection against electronic damage.
  • Ultra-Durable: Made from tough 1000D Cordura nylon, it's built to endure harsh marine conditions.
  • Spacious: With a 40L capacity, it accommodates all your ditch kit items and personal gear.
  • American Craftsmanship: High-quality materials and construction for dependable, lifesaving performance.

SLNT's Faraday Dry Bags

Faraday bags

For smaller vessels, the SLNT Faraday Dry Bag is a compact, versatile option. Ideal for small crafts or personal gear, it protects against electronic threats and environmental damage.


Customizing Your Ditch Kit Contents

While ditch kit content varies by vessel specifics and mission profiles, core categories include:

  • Safety: EPIRB locator beacon, flares, mirrors, dye marker, whistle and strobe light.
  • Communications: Waterproof handheld VHF radio with spare batteries.
  • Navigation: Compass, maps, portable GPS with Faraday protection.
  • Survival Gear: Rations, fishing tackle, fire starter, shelter, first aid.
  • Personal Items: Medications, hygiene items, documents, flashlight, multi-tool, knife, hat, and spare clothes.

Prepare enough capacity for at least 3 days self-contained operation. Include any unique items vital to your personal needs and survival.


Trust Your Life to a Proper Emergency Bag

A fully featured ditch kit could make the difference between life and death during those crucial early hours awaiting rescue.

Protect yourself and your crew by equipping your vessel with a ditch kit that goes beyond the basics for true reliability when it's needed most. The SLNT Submersible Cylinder Faraday Backpack raises the bar as the elite grab bag solution.

"By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail."

Arm yourself with a ditch kit that embodies your dedication to safety, perseverance, and the indomitable human spirit.