As an IT Professional, my regular “work backpack” is somewhat of an EDC (every day carry) bag. It contains tools, cables, gear, devices, and other things that I might need for numerous situations that I could potentially come across. However, I don’t keep any sort of things in it that would benefit me outside of IT related matters.
Recently, I decided to rework and build out my EDC kit for non-work related, daily travels. I’ve always carried certain items on my person and have some supplies/tools on-hand, in my vehicle. In addition, I’ve always carried a trauma bag and have, unfortunately, had to use it several situations. /That’s another rabbit hole I could go down but, ultimately, I believe some people are regularly placed in certain circumstances for very specific reasons. Not to mention, it’s best to be prepared in the event that accidents take place, etc/. While all of these things are great to have, they’re not easily transferrable between vehicles or ALWAYS on hand…this is where the EDC bag comes into play.
It’s important to note that there’s a generally clear distinction between EDC bags, bugout bags, and get home bags. Typically speaking, bugout bags are prepared for when you need to leave your home in a hurry (in the case of a disaster, etc). Get home bags are for when an event or disaster takes place and you want to have something on hand so you can make it home. EDC bags are for transporting items and essentials that you might need for daily use or utilize in daily interactions. In addition, EDC bags have been known to contain some life saving supplies for use in the event of an accident or medical emergency.
I’ve still not completely settled on the exact bag I want to use but, for the moment, I’ve chosen a small Baigio bag (approximately 8-10 liters in size). Overall, I feel like the bag may be a bit too small for my needs but, I’m going to give it a run and try to make it work. Initially, the features that drew me to the bag were the size and the unique strap system. This particular bag features an ambidextrous sling (can attach to either side) that can also split into 2 pieces, via a zipper, to allow it to be worn like a traditional backpack. Additionally, there is a pocket for the strap(s) to be stowed in so you can just carry the back via the top-most drag handle (similar to a briefcase). I really like the option to stow the sling/straps as they can get in the way when trying to store the bag (in a vehicle, etc).
The contents are always subject to change but, at the moment, I have some basic essentials that would prove useful in day to day activities. Without going into a detailed review, the exterior portion the bag contains sunglasses, a few pens, a sharpie, and an all weather pad of paper. Moving in a level, you’ll find a pair of Mechanix brand gloves, a utility knife, and a modest roll of 550 paracord. The largest pocket contains an admin pouch (containing various electronics cables, a battery pack, zip ties/cable ties and a USB charger) and an IFAK (individual first aid kit) pouch. I consider it an IFAK due to the size but, I pack with enough supplies to handle more than just one person’s injuries. I consider this one of the most important things to include in an EDC bag.
In general, most people already carry some sort of EDC bag and don’t realize it. This could be a purse, laptop bag, tote, gym bag, or any other sort of regularly carried container/satchel. The main difference is, I don’t regularly use most of the items in my work laptop bag, on a daily basis (outside of work activities). As such, it doesn’t benefit me to transport it everywhere or wear it all the time. Not to mention, as a technician, I carry a significant amount of tech supplies in that bag so, it’s not comfortable to wear on a regular basis. In addition, I believe having trauma or STP (stop the blood) gear immediately accessible is
extremely important vital and this particular bag does not lend itself to that.
As alluded to in the introduction, I’ve had the opportunity to witness accidents and/or to be the first person on the scene of an accident, on several occasions. Depending on the severity of the incident, the first few minutes following an accident are critical. In one of the most recent events, I witnessed a motorcyclist broadside a postal truck (tractor trailer) at about 50mph, after the truck made a turn in front of the motorcycle. After the initial impact, the rear set of tires rolled over the motorcyclist while he was laying on top of his bike. As you can imagine, the motorcyclist suffered pretty significant injuries (including several broken/exposed bones, and puncture wounds from the pegs/forks of his bike). Thankfully, I had a trauma kit in my truck at the time. I was able to stop his blood loss and stabilize him until paramedics arrived. Considering the accident took place in a rural part of the county, it took paramedics nearly 20 minutes to arrive. I’m confident that the choices I made, and aid that was provided, significantly impacted that individual’s chances of survival.
That’s merely one of multiple situations that I’ve been involved with. Each time these events take place, it reinforces my belief that having regular access to trauma supplies, and being familiar with how to use them, is an absolute necessity.
I’m going to give this bag a fair trial to see if it’s comfortable to carry and has enough space to be useful for my needs. While writing this post, I’m already looking at numerous other options. I’ve also asked for input from the Mastodon community and have already received some fantastic feedback. Once I settle on an appropriate bag, I’ll likely make an in-depth post regarding the bag and the contents of it (including pictures). I purposely left pictures out of this post as the current bag is slightly underwhelming.
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