If you become lost or stranded, and whether you are alone or in a group, a survival plan is your first priority. Survival plans need to follow a logical sequence to ensure all aspects are covered. The plan should include the following…
SITUATION [brief description of what has happened]
This is a brief description of factors known and assumed from what has happened and should include the following details…
What skills are available within the group? Does anyone have any survival knowledge? Is there anybody in the group with professional or specific capabilities?
What water do you have? Is it likely to rain? Is there any water available in the area? What equipment do you have for storing water, carrying water and water procurement?
What prevailing conditions do you need to shelter from? What can be improvised to provide shelter? What items do you have that can be used to build shelters?
Do you have matches or a cigarette lighter? Can you identify any alternative methods of lighting fires? Can you gather enough fuel to sustain warmth for a period of days?
What food do you have? Is there any food available in the area? What equipment do you have for hunting, gathering and storing food?
What is your present general location?
Can you indicate north, south, east and west?
How do you expect to be rescued? What direction do you expect rescue to come from? How will you signal rescuers? What is available to build rescue signals?
What equipment do you have and what can be improvised?
MISSION [overall objective of what you hope to achieve]
A clear, concise, single purpose statement of the overall outcome to be achieved. In all survival situations the mission statement is – TO STAY ALIVE.
EXECUTION [what you’re going to do to achieve mission]
Should contain details of your best course of action and how the mission will be accomplished. Include a general outline with details of roles, tasks, and methods.
If possible, people in a survival situation should remain with their vehicle or [other], and if on foot establish a camp as soon as practical.
If in a group, task leaders should be elected and teams nominated for each of the following requirements…
Develop a control and distribution plan for any available water and discuss and implement water procurement strategies and methods to be used.
Conduct an audit of useable items available; nominate a shelter-building team to determine the type of shelter or shelters required and methods of construction.
Identify ways of staying warm and develop strategies and procedures to cope. Nominate a team responsible for gathering fuel, identifying any available accelerants and identify suitable fire lighting methods.
Develop a control and rationing plan of available food and discuss and implement food procurement strategies and methods.
Locate north and construct an earth compass.
Locate your position relative to identifiable landmarks and easily recognisable features and set boundaries for movement outside the camp area.
If in a group… elect a task leader, develop rescue strategies, build and maintain rescue signals and implement the 24 hour manning of fires and emergency signals.