Packed with first-aid gear
Lacks most disaster essentials
Natural disasters are popping up all over the globe, which means there’s no better time than now to prepare for earthquakes, hurricanes, and the like—and I’m taking my own advice. I vowed to get my home ready for any disasters coming my way in 2020, and the first step was experimenting with multiple survival kits and emergency bags to see which works best for me.
The Protect Life Emergency First-Aid Kit caught my eye because it’s marketed as an emergency bag that can be used in events like storms or earthquakes. It’s also tiny compared to most other emergency kits, so I thought it could come in handy for travel or just stowing in a basement closet for those unpredictable moments. I took the Protect Life Emergency First-Aid Kit on a test run and asked my fiancé, an emergency medicine doctor who specializes in disaster medicine, about the gear. Here’s where we landed.
Quality: Decent—but not impressive—quality
The Protect Life Emergency First-Aid Kit is good enough, but it’s not perfect. The bandages are your average generic style (they stuck for a bit then started peeling up when touched by water). The ponchos were also pretty thin, and could easily rip or snag in the wrong situation.
It’ll do the trick in an emergency.
That said, the small shears did the trick and cut through test fabric, which is one thing my fiancé always looks out for—it’s essential for treating wounds quickly. The cold compress was also quick to chill, and the whistle was audible at a distance.
Overall, this isn’t your top-of-the-line medical gear, but at the same time, my fiancé said it’ll do the trick in an emergency, when small issues like a bandage coming up slightly at the sides is far from the biggest priority.
Utility: An everyday first-aid kit
The Protect Life Emergency First-Aid Kit is definitely, well, a first-aid kit, but it shouldn’t be marketed as an earthquake or disaster preparedness kit. It’s simply not. It may have an emergency poncho, light sticks, and a compass, but it lacks virtually all of the CDC-recommended earthquake items. To really be an earthquake preparedness kit, it would need a tent for shelter, a rope for rescue, flashlights, radios, waterproof matches, food and water, and much more. Instead, I’m considering the Protect Life Emergency First-Aid Kit to be part of my overall earthquake and hurricane gear, but I’d definitely need a more robust pack with the CDC-recommended gear to feel safe and secure in a disaster.
Versatility: Helpful for most mild injuries
The Protect Life Emergency First-Aid Kit may not be perfect, but it does have many of the essential medical items to keep you safe and on the mend when disaster strikes. It has eye pads to help with any debris-related injuries, a cold pack for bruises, shears (that work!) for getting to a wound quickly, an abdominal pad, a CPR mask, and—perhaps most importantly—an instruction guide on how to use the gear. Of course, it’s hard to sit down and read a manual during a disaster, but it’s important to have the information at your fingertips if you (like me) lose focus and start shaking at the sight of blood.
It’s an affordable way to start building your earthquake preparedness kit, but don’t forget to gather other essentials.
The kit is definitely not specific to earthquake injuries; it’s a versatile medical equipment pack to keep with you for any medical emergencies.
Weight: Light and portable
At around one pound, the Protect Life Emergency First-Aid Kit is easy to carry or stash in a backpack. This is largely due to the fact that it’s small and doesn’t have the food or water necessary for disaster survival, but you can easily add it to a larger and more robust earthquake kit without piling on too much weight.
The kit is easy to carry or stash in a backpack.
Size: Easily stowed
The Protect Life Emergency First-Aid Kit is the size of a regular toiletry bag, which means stowing it is a breeze. This is the type of kit I’d throw in the trunk and forget about—that is, until I needed it. It can also fit in hiking backpacks or earthquake emergency kits. If you’re flying with it, though, don’t forget to remove the shears.
Price: A good deal
At around $20 for 150 items—not to mention a nice carrying kit—this bag is a solid deal for the included gear. It is on par with other first-aid kits with similar supplies.
Protect Life Emergency First-Aid Kit vs. Ready America 2-Person Emergency Kit
The Protect Life Emergency First-Aid Kit and the Ready America 2-Person Emergency Kit (view on Amazon), which I also tested, are both on the lighter end of emergency preparedness. The two kits include a few must-have essentials, but they’re lacking more than they have. Being compact, they’re also the kind of kits you can throw in your car trunk or closet and forget about until you need them.
Still, these two kits have quite a few striking differences. The Protect Life kit focuses more on first aid. The Ready America kit, on the other hand, includes food and emergency drinking water, which is a must for any emergency. It also comes with supplies like a survival blanket, a light stick, and a whistle, as well as a backpack for easy carrying. However, the Ready America kit is also a bit more expensive, at around $50.
Interested in reading more reviews? Check out our list of the best earthquake kits.
- Product Name Emergency First-Aid Kit for Car, Travel, Office, Home, or Sports
- Product Brand Protect Life
- Price $23.92
- Weight 1.1 lbs.
- Product Dimensions 8.3 x 5.9 x 2.4 in.
- Color Red
- Material Nylon pack
- What’s Included Antiseptic cleaning wipes, alcohol prep pad, butterfly closure strips, adhesive bandages, gauze swab, instant cold compress, roll first-aid pad, cotton tip applicator, first-aid abdominal pad, rescue howler whistle, compass, moleskin blister relief, triangular bandage, emergency blanket, glow stick, disposable raincoat, scissors, metal tweezers, roll PBT conforming bandage, first-aid CPR face mask, eye pad, first-aid elbow/knee bandage, safety pins, povidone-iodine prep pads, first-aid non-adherent pad, first-aid adhesive wound dressing, first-aid guide, first-aid bag, first-aid brochure, first-aid disposable gloves