Every year, dozens of campers get into trouble while out in the wilderness, and end up either injured or worse, suffer a fatality. The key to preventing these types of accidents, according to experts, is to be prepared whenever going into the wild.
“It’s a senseless tragedy whenever someone dies on a camping trip,” says a retailer of handheld LED flashlights, “because most of the accidents that happen can be prevented.”
And Butch Farabee, the superintendent of Padre Island National Seashore, Texas and a search and rescue expert for the National Park Service agrees. He says that when campers are killed, “the death certificate usually says ‘killed by a fall,’ or ‘died of exposure, or some such thing.” But he says that what most people don’t understand is that “The number one cause of injury and death is unpreparedness.” He says that campers should always ask themselves ‘What if?” And then have a plan in case the best case scenario doesn’t happen. And that means bringing along important safety items that can be used in an emergency.
“One of the biggest causes for concern is a lack of light,” says the retailer. “After all, campers can’t go to relieve themselves in the middle of the night without one, and if the area isn’t lit up, they can’t know if there are rattlesnakes or bears in the area. But the type of flashlight campers pack for the trip is equally important.”
He’s talking about the new small, handheld flashlights that are known for lasting longer than regular flashlights. One look at camping forums and it’s easy to see that one of the chief complaints is flashlights that die right when they’re needed the most. “But these small little LED flashlights will spotlight bigger areas and give campers more options when it comes to light. For instance, the flashlights can be narrowed down to a small beam, or campers can use a wide angle to light up a large area of the woods.”
Other options campers should look for when it comes to flashlights is a sturdy steel design, and waterproofing. “It won’t do to lose your only light because it’s dropped in the stream,” says the retailer. “But campers don’t think about things like that until it’s too late.”
Experts say that in addition to ensuring there is sufficient light on a camping trip, campers should obey all posted rules and not venture off of marked trails. “It’s mostly just common sense,” says the retailer. “But it’s important because one wrong move could mean the difference between life and death.”