Surviving Open Waters in a Bug-Out Boat


Todd’s Note: This is a guest post.

Safety-conscious people prepping for a survival situation usually have a bug-out bag and vehicle packed and ready to go on the quick. The ideal choice for a bug-out vehicle is a small RV with enough power and versatility to provide adequate shelter and transportation in an emergency scenario. And sometimes, a more compact and affordable version—think converted van or bus—can be equally as effective. But what about a bug-out boat? In some cases, it’s the perfect solution.

Bug-Out Boats

For those who live along the coasts or around the Great Lakes, a bug-out boat is a great option. Boats offer a quick escape while providing plenty of room for storage and survival essentials, should a high-risk scenario occur. A boater education course in Wisconsin, along with a sense of adventure, can give you the ultimate bug-out conveyance. Bug-out houseboats can be found for prices that are comparable to that of RVs, and the advantage of having a boat is that it provides the opportunity to physically remove yourself from nearly all human contact with little effort. Surviving long-term on a small boat has advantages over land survival, but also comes with caveats of its own.

Staying Afloat

We’re only human, thus the number one priority in open-water survival scenarios is to stay above water. Magician David Blaine held his breath for 17 minutes on the Oprah Winfrey Show, while world record holder Tom Sietas clocked over 22 minutes submerged under water. Unfortunately, the average human can hold their breath for only one minute.

The more floatation devices there are on the boat, the more safety and peace of mind it brings to occupants. Each person should have their own life vest, while two inflatable life boats should be located at opposite ends of the vessel. They are lightweight, inexpensive, and take up little storage space. Your boat should also be equipped with life preservers and a rescue line. A man overboard may be stricken with panic and thus too strong for another swimmer to rescue immediately.

Always try and relax when overboard. The human body can naturally keep itself afloat with the nose and mouth above water as long as one remains calm. Lie on your back or use the face-down survival float, depending on water and body conditions. Help yourself relax by lifting your head entirely out of the water whenever possible to take a breath. Prepare your family with several floating techniques through open-water swimming lessons which are offered across the country.


Another beneficial part about bugging out on a boat is that you’ll be able to spot potential enemies before they make contact. Defensive 12-gauge slugs are available in sizes big enough to damage another boat that gets within a 30- to 40-yard range. Parts kits are also available online for a build-your-own M79 grenade launcher — these are inexpensive, legal, and though they should be used as a last resort, they can potentially save you and your family from an unfortunate encounter at sea.

This article first appeared on Ed That Matters.

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Todd Sepulveda

I'm the owner/editor of Prepper Website, a DAILY preparedness aggregator that links to the best preparedness articles on the internet. I'm also a public school administrator and a pastor. My personal blog is Ed That Matters, where I write about preparedness and from time to time, education. Connect with me on one of my social media outlets below.

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One Response

  1. Stew Pedaso December 20, 2015

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