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Desert Survival Tips

If Things Go Wrong

Have the Will To Survive
Do the right things and you will survive

•   Don’t panic. Remain calm and think rationally. Don’t loose your cool. Panic is your enemy.
•   Avoid strenuous activity in the heat of the day. Conserve your energy.
•   Stay in the shade of the vehicle. On a hot day, the sand can get up to 180 degrees or more. Conserve your energy for the cooler part of the day.

Make yourself visible. A column of smoke can be seen for miles in the daytime. Think of ways to attract attention to your location. If at all possible, be visible from the air and ground. As a last ditch effort, during daylight, you can use a small amount of gasoline to set a tire or other material on fire that will create a large, dark cloud that will be visible for miles. (Be sure that you set the fire a safe distance away from your vehicle if you choose this option).

•   Drinking alcohol can cause dehydration and is not a replacement for water.
•   Use anything that makes noise like a vehicle horn. Your vehicle affords many resources.
•   Don’t ration water. Drink if you are thirsty. Your body is a canteen and will store water.

Avoid eating if possible. The digestion process uses valuable water and can cause dehydration. You can survive for many, many days without eating, but can survive only a few days without water.


Stay clothed. If properly dressed, your clothes actually insulate you from the heat (if you are not active and are in the shade). Use plenty of sunscreen on exposed areas of your body such as your arms, hands, neck and face.


Most cell phones and radios work in remote areas. Even if there isn’t a highway in sight, your cell phone may still be able to “reach” a repeater. Keep trying to call someone.

Above all, stay calm and stay alive!

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