People Share A Random Piece Of Knowledge That Might Save Your Life One Day
It’s easy to take random pieces of knowledge for granted, especially if you feel they won’t ever apply to you. But never say never—honestly, in this life, anything goes, and we can never tell with absolute certainty whether a particular occurrence will happen to us or not. That’s why it’s important to soak in all of the advice you receive. It never hurts to be prepared for any case scenario. People across the world took the internet to share a random piece of knowledge that they believe might save your life one day. Most of these nuggets of wisdom were based on real-life experiences, so there is definitely merit to them. Read on and educate yourself—you never know if you’ll end up having to deal with one or more these situations in the future:
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#1 Fishy Smell
A few months ago I had a fishy smell in my living room. It took me a week to find it. Turned out, one of my outlets on the wall had burned. Thank goodness it wasn’t worse or the whole house could’ve gone up. Usually, an off-smell indicates that there’s a problem.
#2 Leave A Trail
Polar bears have insane ADHD. If one is chasing you, intermittently drop clothing items like a hat or gloves. It will stop to sniff them. Normal prey animals don’t shed whole pieces of themselves: the bear will be perplexed. Also, in the Arctic, if you sweat, you will not make it. The sweat will freeze in your clothing, which will induce hypothermia much faster. And since you can’t get them dry, you’re basically screwed.
#3 Location Is Key
If you call 911, always say WHERE the problem is first, followed by the problem. If you happen to get cut off before you can say what the problem is, at least the dispatcher has a location to send an officer to check it out and advise if more police or fire is needed. Location, location, location.
#4 Always Call An Ambulance
Maybe not your life, but someone else’s. If you’re having a party, regardless of nature, and someone needs to go to the hospital, CALL AN AMBULANCE. There are laws to protect you, but getting a citation is a lot less trouble than having someone lose their life in your home. The same goes if you’re attending the party. Don’t worry about the homeowners and tenants, worry about the person whose life is at risk.
#5 As Long As You’re Safe
My friend was carjacked. The guy told her to start driving, so she did… right into a cement pillar. The airbag hit the guy and he broke his arm. She ran into the store while he was disoriented. She kept hitting the lock button on her key fob to keep him in the car until the cops showed up. Insurance elected to raise on her because of the “accident,” though, so that may not be the best way to handle it. But honestly, as long as she got out safe, what else matters?
#6 Firefighter Training
If there is a fire, crawl out of the building. Do not stand up to run—one or two intakes of the plume are enough to do major damage and require hospitalization. It may be warm where you are crawling, but standing up can cook your skin (and your lungs). The plumes at “eye-level” can be more than 600°C. If you can’t see and don’t know the room layout, crawl with your feet or legs in front of you. Do not crawl face first, or you may take a dive down a staircase in the confusion.
#7 The Importance of Pull-Ups
If you can’t do a pull-up, you probably won’t have the strength to pull yourself up off a ledge. That has stuck with me ever since. In theory, it’s very true… but I would guess most people could if some serious adrenaline is involved. Yesterday, someone posted a LiveLeak video of people who were doing parkour on high rise buildings. Some of them ended up falling. I don’t know why I watched it, but it was interesting—some of those people would do like, three pull-ups before losing their grip. So, it seems like if you can’t do a pull up where you pull yourself up to your waist, you may still be screwed.
#8 Tigers And Wolves
The instinct of wolves will only cause them to attack or hunt you if they can intimidate you into fleeing from them. Standing your ground against a wolfpack will be terrifying, but will eventually cause them to bugger off. Tigers as well. Don’t turn your eyes away from a tiger. There is a story of a boy who had to walk backward for three hours back to his village while being stalked by a tiger. The cost-benefit of a prey animal even slightly hurting a tiger is not worth it. It could mean an end sentence in the wild.
#9 Check For Depth
That water you’re about to dive into might not be as deep as you think. Always step in and swim down to check for depth, then jump. My dad told me a story about a group of guys he knew from school. After graduation, they all went up to someone’s lake house and one guy decided to dive off the dock as soon as they got there. The water was shallow that year and when he dove in, he broke his neck and lost his life on impact.
#10 In The Event Of A Tsunami
If the tide suddenly goes out unexpectedly, run as if you stole it, for higher ground. I read about a ten-year-old English girl who had just learned this before going on vacation with her family to Thailand. The big tsunami that ended a few hundred thousand came. She saw the water retreat and the other tourists walked out on the exposed seafloor. She freaked out and convinced everybody to run for higher ground. A lot of people were saved by a little girl who had paid attention in school.
#11 Rabies Are No Joke
If you are ever bitten by a bat, raccoon, fox, or skunk go directly to the hospital. There is no cure for rabies once it is fully onset. Out of all history, only five people survived rabies from the full onset, and Meredith Palmer was one of the five.
#12 Moose Chase
If you’re ever charged by a moose, get behind a tree. They have about a ten-inch blind spot and they’ll lose you. That’s what ski patrol would always say when there was an increase in moose sightings on the mountain. They’d tell you to stay out of the trees when skiing… unless a moose is running at you. In such a case, you’d want to find trees because, unless you’ve got a steep hill or are already up to speed, the moose is probably faster than you think.
#13 Chewing Aspirin
When people say to take an aspirin to help during a heart attack, chew the pill, don’t swallow it whole. It gets absorbed much quicker. Also, if at all possible, cough hard in the same rhythm as your heart would normally be beating. The constriction in the chest can help prolong passing out long enough to get help.
#14 Keep Eye Contact
If a person asks you for something in the street—a light, the time, whatever—always keep the person in your sight. So, if they ask for the time, don’t just look down at your watch. Raise your arm slightly so your watch is in your sight. I was told this years ago at a self-defense workshop. I wondered if it was ever going to be useful or just something to pad out the teacher’s session.
Then, a decade later, I was on the street late at night on my way home, and someone approached me to ask for the time. I did this, told him the time, and he just kind of stood there. Then, he started asking some weird, clearly improvised question about how he was looking for his friend’s house, and he was sure it was on that street, and he had a “yellow vehicle” similar to the one behind me. I didn’t look back but just said, “Yeah, yellow, uh-huh” as he pointed directly behind me.
I said, “Yeah, the yellow car, I saw it as I walked by, so?” He paused for a second, looking like that meme of the woman with the equations around her head, then just yelled “Oh, SCREW YOU.” and stormed off. It was only afterward I realized that I think he wanted me to look away so he could slug me, but he wasn’t prepared to attack someone that was looking right at him.
#15 Buried Alive
If you’ve been buried alive in a standard coffin, stay calm. If you are still alive, you haven’t been buried that long. Also, the dirt above you hasn’t set yet. Most coffins are not built to last once buried and as a result have weak siding. So here is what you do: Pull your shirt over your head. You don’t want to be swallowing the dirt. Position yourself so you are as sideways in the coffin as possible with your hands and feet pushing on the long sides. PUSH. You should be able to blow out one of the walls. Then, start crawling up. Do not panic. You may not find a grip immediately. Keep going until you make it out.
#16 De-Victimize Yourself
Always leave your itinerary with someone. If you meet strangers—that is, potential bad people—on the road, always let them know that you are in touch with friends and family and that they know exactly where you are. You become less attractive as a victim. Also, let them know that you have a destination and are expected at a particular time, too.
#17 Tornado Tip
If you’re unsure about the movement of a tornado, put a straight object such as a tree or a street light in between you and the tornado. It’ll make it way easier to see which way the tornado is moving. If the tornado appears to not be moving, it’s coming right at you. Usually, the only reference you will have is the width. If it doesn’t appear to be moving but is getting wider, it’s coming towards you; at which point you’ll want to move perpendicular to its movement.
#18 Neutral Brakes
If your car suddenly accelerates beyond control and the brakes are unresponsive, shift the car in to neutral and slowly apply the brakes. This situation happened to a family in California some years ago. They had no idea what to do and tragically lost their lives.
#19 Forget Being Polite
EMT here! If you’re ever choking on food in a public venue, DO NOT go to the restroom to avoid causing a scene. Almost every tragedy I’ve seen from people choking involves finding the victims unconscious in a bathroom stall because they were too polite to seek help. I feel like if there’s any situation in which it’s okay to not be polite, it’s when you’re choking.
#20 Get Screened
One out of 20 people will get bowel cancer in their lifetime. You need some sort of screening starting at age 45 to 50, depending on your family history. Any blood in the stool needs to be checked out. Early cancers can be completely cured with keyhole surgery. You don’t have to fall victim to bowel cancer. In Australia, when you turn 50, the government starts sending you free testing kits every two years.
#21 The Sun’s Glare
For pedestrians crossing the street: if you can see the sun’s reflection on the windshield of a car, there’s a good chance the driver can not see you. If your shadow points toward the car, the same applies. Basically, always assume the driver can’t see you. You might not feel like it’s “right” and that you have the right of way, but on the other hand, you’ll be alive to complain about it.
#22 Just Wreck-It
If you’ve been carjacked and the carjacker tells you to just drive, take whatever chance you get to wreck. At a minimum, you’re getting emergency services involved (meaning it’s more likely they’ll be caught), and there’s a chance you’ll incapacitate or even end the carjacker. Just tighten your seatbelt beforehand to increase your chances of survival. Of course, there’s also a chance that you might not survive, but, if they’re taking you to a second location, odds are you probably weren’t going to come back anyway.
If you’re choking with nobody around to give you the Heimlich, you can give yourself the Heimlich by using the back of a chair (or similar objects like the sidearm of a couch, or whatever). Forcefully throw your stomach over the back of the chair a few times, try to mimic the motion of the Heimlich: push in above the belly button, then up… kind of like a “J” motion.
#24 Just Float On
If you fall into cold open water, resist the urge to swim and try to float until the onset of panic subsides. Once you have your breathing under control, you can then start to swim to safety. By doing this, you will not hyperventilate and avoid potentially drowning. Also, to float: slowly lift your legs up, keep your arms out at the water’s surface and lean your head back. Yes, you will get water in your ears, just let it be.
#25 Dealing With A Missing Person
Contrary to common myth, you can file a missing person report before 24 hours have passed. Putting it off a day because they went missing that night could very easily be the difference between them being found or not.
#26 First Aid And CPR
Everyone should have basic first aid and CPR training, if possible. My dad collapsed on Saturday morning when he got up to go to the toilet and neither I or my mom knew basic first aid or CPR. The ambulance took eight minutes to arrive and we only live four streets away from the depot. Luckily, he came too, but there was a point where he stopped breathing. If he continued to not breathe for eight minutes, it would have been too late. Please learn and hope you don’t need it, instead of needing it and not knowing.
#27 Car Going Under
If your car is going underwater, an electronic “roll-down” button will work regardless of the water pressure outside the car. However, a manual handle is much more difficult (you also won’t be able to open the door). It’s better to have something in the glovebox (like an ice scraper) to break the window glass with.
#28 Exit Strategy
When you go into a building, look for an exit that is not the one you used to come in. In an emergency, most people will head out their original exit, but you will head out of the exit less traveled… and it may make all the difference. This happened at the Great White Show. People got wedged in the exit they entered through. Meanwhile, other people just easily walked out using the other exits.
#29 Just Let It Go
Let it go. Don’t let road rage influence your behavior. It’s not worth it. Take a deep breath, count to 10. Take your foot off the pedal. Disengage. It’s not worth it. This sounds like a joke, but the most soul-crushing moment I had while driving was when someone shook their head at me in disappointment because I was blocking a small road due to my own impatience.
#30 The Sleep Trick
A friend who grew up in a “rough” neighborhood taught me this one: if you’re on a bus and robbers get on, you have a chance of not having your stuff taken or being bothered at all if you pretend to be asleep. The robbers have to keep their eyes on a lot of people at once to prevent anyone from calling the police, or prevent the driver from signaling distress somehow, and prevent all passengers from reacting in dangerous ways. If you’re asleep, that’s one person less for a robber to manage, so they may not bother to wake you up.
#31 Be More Specific
If you are in danger or in need of help in a public place, it’s almost always a bad idea to just yell “help.” It’s more important to be specific. Pointing at someone and telling them to call 911 will be more effective. The Bystander Effect can be terrible sometimes. On a related note for adults: if someone tries to get into a vehicle you’re driving, like at a stoplight or a parking lot, punch the gas. Do not drive to wherever this person is telling you to go. Hit whatever is in front or behind you (unless it’s a person, don’t hit a person). A car, a wall, what have you. Accidents draw people and thereby more witnesses.
#32 On Blood Thinners
If you’re taking blood thinners, you should know they increase the risks of bleeding. You should watch out for signs of bleeding like pallor, breathlessness, multiple rashes, bleeding gums, etc. If you accidentally cut yourself, take great care of the cut—you could bleed out if you don’t. At the pharmacy today, a regular patient passed away because she got a cut on her leg while gardening, but didn’t think much about it. Since she was on blood thinners, she bled out during the night.
#33 Seatbelts And Helmets
Wear a helmet, wear a seatbelt. It may not be cool, but you’re more fragile than you lead yourself to believe. I’ve lost three friends because they didn’t wear the appropriate gear or follow simple safety practices. Don’t be a statistic, please. There’s someone out there who would miss you and think, “I just wish they had put a helmet or seatbelt on.”
#34 Avoid Electrical Objects
When touching some thing electrical, use the back of your hand. Using your palm on, say, a live wire will cause your hand to grab it and you be unable to let go. Then again, as an electrician, just don’t grab electrical things at all. Let me do it, instead. We have meters and detectors that can sense electricity before anyone ever has to touch it. The price of a service call isn’t worth your life. Electricity will end you and will hurt the whole time that you are being electrocuted.
#35 Downhill To Safety
Bears can climb trees but have trouble running downhill as they gain too much speed. If you’re being chased by a bear, head for a hill rather than up a tree. Or, better yet, know the signs of a bear and have bear spray if you, you know, like wandering around where there are bears. Watch out for black bears, specifically. They can come in basically every color and shade that human hair can naturally appear. Brown, reddish-brown, black, even blond (though straight-up black is the most common by far). If it’s black, don’t climb. You’d be better off trying to intimidate it.
#36 Practicing Blindfolded
Blindfold yourself and try to find the way out of your own house. You will be surprised how hard it is to find the stairs etc. Practicing this once every three months will allow you to find your way out in case your house is filled with plumes from a fire (which can happen within a minute).
#37 Lock Your Doors
Lock all your doors when you’re in the house. No neighborhood is 100 percent safe. No kidding. I work a night shift and was up at 3 a.m. watching TV. All the lights in the living room were on. This was like, a beacon for people looking to rob houses as they thought the owners left the lights on to go on vacation. I had some guy knock on my front door to see if anyone was home before he busted in. I then heard the handle jiggle.
Needless to say, he was quite surprised when I responded along with three great Danes. It was more than he bargained for and he tried to play it off like he needed a ride into town. I live in a rural area and there isn’t a neighbor within a quarter-mile of me, let alone any sort of business. My wife called the cops but he disappeared before they got there.
#38 Sepsis Scares
When you cut yourself as a kid, your parents always washed and cleaned the wound, then put antiseptic on it before putting a plaster (band-aid) on it. They did it for a very good reason. You should always treat every cut—no matter how superficial—with the same degree of care. No one should never mess around with sepsis. It’s a horrible thing to experience, and an even worse thing to go out on.
#39 Determining Priorities
I’d say the survival rule of three: humans can survive three weeks without food, three days without water, three hours without shelter, and three minutes without oxygen. It helps you get your priorities straight, should it come to it.
#40 Never Relocate
If someone threatens you with violence and orders you to move you to another location, your chance of getting hurt goes up considerably if you agree to relocate. My father was an assistant DA who worked with homicide. He gave me this advice over and over. Years later, someone climbed in my car and threatened me. He told me to drive. And… I said no. I took the keys out and threw them. It wasn’t a conscious decision. My dad had just hammered his advice in so hard that it switched on. The guy got out without saying a word and ran.
#41 Stunt Man Advice
If you have to get out of a moving car, put one foot down and take a step. Don’t just jump out. This will reduce your speed immensely. Sure, you will fall over, but at a much-reduced speed. A stunt man told me this. I had to leave a moving car that was going about 40mph… I was pregnant. I had a medium-sized purse and a pillow. The man driving the car had said he was going to end us both if he couldn’t have me and was going in and out of oncoming traffic. I grabbed my bag and pillow and held the pillow across my stomach while I opened the door. I then stepped out and let myself roll. It was amazing! I ended up with just a handful of bruises and scrapes and I was fine. My daughter is 14 now. We made it.
#42 Predator Kill Zone
If you notice a lack of small creatures or woodlands animals nearby, most fear human interaction but you’ll know they’re there. But if it is noticeably empty, then you’re likely in a predator kill zone. Similarly, if you see a lot of vultures circling, it can mean a lifeless animal or a predator animal cache. So be aware of this when you’re in the outdoors.
#43 Attracted To The Sting
Beekeeper here. For honey bees, it’s a sting that attracts them. If you get stung, they release a pheromone that tells the other bees to sting the same place. Cover the spot with your hand or rub it with something that has a strong smell. Just not something that smells like banana. The chemical that makes the banana smell is the same as bees’ alarm pheromone. If you smell bananas when you’re working your bees, you’ve upset them.
#44 Household Chemistry
Never use bleach and ammonia-based cleaning products at the same time or in the same room. A combination of both their vapors creates chloramine vapor, which can end you if you inhale it. Check your cleaning supplies to see what’s in the, especially toilet and tile cleaners.
#45 Dodging Rhinos
If a rhino is running towards you, wait until the last second, then step out of the way. Rhinos cannot make sudden turns and will give you a couple of seconds of a head start to run in the other direction. Repeat as necessary!