The use of candles, grease and kerosene lamps, radar reflectors, bottle mail as signaling equipment for distress signals.

Even an elementary candle can serve as a signaling means for giving distress signals. Although this may seem strange at first glance, the light of candles is best distinguished when they burn inside a fabric (especially if the fabric is light colors) or a block of snow-covered shelter. 

The use of candles, grease and kerosene lamps, radar reflectors, bottle mail as signaling devices for distress signals.

Seeping through microscopic holes in the material or through snow, especially at the joints of snow blocks, the light of candles makes the walls of the shelter glow brightly in the dark. Such inside snow-covered shelters or tents are visible much further than just a candle lit on the street.

closed type (caves, holes), which are built inside the snowdrifts and therefore do not shine through well; a light window of any desired shape can be cut through their walls or ceiling. For example, in the form of an SOS signal. To enhance the power of the light signal, exactly the same windows can be cut out in the walls of block shelters.

Similarly, fat and kerosene lamps such as a bat can be used as a light signaling means. If there is a signal mirror, the light of candles or lamps can be tried to reflect towards a flying aircraft. Such a signal will be more targeted and, therefore, more noticeable. Using the principle of operation of a kerosene lamp that protects the wick’s weak fire from adverse weather conditions with glass, it is possible to construct various primitive signal lights and lamps using improvised means.

A candle, or rather, several candles placed next to each other, are installed on an elevated place, clearly distinguishable from the air and the ground, inside a large plastic bag folded into a bag, spread on 4 6 pyramid-shaped poles. In the absence of a bag, the pole frame is wound round the round with polyethylene sheet or a piece of any light material. When using long poles, such a signal bag can be raised several meters above ground level, for example, over a shrub blocking the signal. In this case, in the upper part of the frame it is necessary to make a grating from the branches, above which wrap the poles with plastic film.

To light candles, you must either make a ladder that can withstand the weight of a person (for example, by stuffing or strapping cross bars on two close wire poles), or raise candles on a special platform using ropes thrown across the cross beams of the frame. More gentle and smooth lifting can be achieved using special blocks. Or even one block fixed at the very top of the frame, if a hoisting rope is passed through its ring, the other end of which, with four additional bindings, is attached to the corners of the lifting platform.

The lifting block can be built from a short wooden block, evenly sawn from a thin trunk, drilled in the middle and sandwiched between two plates made of any improvised material. Or simply worn on a wire or wooden axis, if the perimeter of the ring is preliminarily cut into a deep groove into which the rope will drown, and which will prevent it from sliding off the block ring when lifting.

, on a branch frame. The larger the size of their planes located at right angles, the further they will be distinguishable. Rescuers claim that even a simple galvanized bucket suspended on the tip of the mast of the yacht makes it easier to detect.

Bottle mail as a distress alert.

I will mention one more archaic way to alarm bottled mail. It was used by sailors long before the invention of radio and pyrotechnic signaling devices. Notes were put in empty bottles indicating the place and circumstances of the disaster, the name of the vessel and the name of the captain. The bottle was sealed and thrown into the sea, in the wake of the waves. There are several cases when, thanks to a similar method of transmitting information to victims, a disaster was discovered and saved..

In modern conditions, this alarm method can be used in case of accidents that occurred in the upper reaches of shipping or with populated river banks. To do this, a letter with a request to transfer it to the rescuers or to local authorities should be enclosed in an empty plastic bottle, flask, in extreme cases, an empty glass bottle. Indicate the place of the accident in the letter, the number of people in need of assistance, etc. And the day and time of departure is obligatory. It is advisable to seal the necks of glass bottles by coating the cork with resin of coniferous trees..

The effectiveness of this emergency alert method depends on the number of bottles dropped into the water and their appearance. The latter should be as attractive as possible so that the mail bottle is not mistaken for useless garbage. Probably the easiest way to achieve this is if you wrap the letter in several banknotes so that they shine through the glass.

Based on materials from the School of Survival in Accidents and Natural Disasters.
Ilyin A.

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