“Hello and good evening everyone, my name is Uzair Shah. Most of you are probably already aware of that. I am from Jackson, Tennessee although I’m currently over here in Sacramento at our lovely local college. Alright I see some Tennessee fans here. Go Jaguars!
So before I get started I want to ask you all a question. How many of you go hiking on the trails at the mountains? Okay, I see some hands. Let me ask you another. How many of you have ever been lost? Alright, I see only two hands meaning not a lot. Let me tell you all something. In the past year there have been over 5,000 missing persons reports all over the country.
Why so many you ask? Well it’s a common occurrence believe it or not. It can happen to anyone. Most people can go off path for hours before even realizing they are lost. Many missing people are eventually found and that is because they were trained with the necessary precautions of how to survive in the wilderness. As someone with experience I am going to explain to you all on how to deal with a situation like this if you were to ever get lost.
Now the first thing you do when you realize you are lost is to stay calm no matter what. You are in a dangerous situation and losing control of yourself is the last thing you would want. When I first got lost, I was lucky enough to read the survival guide early before. I was cold, I was scared, and I wanted to go home. My first instinct was to travel downhill as it was getting dark but instead I accidentally triggered a small rock avalanche which made me stumble and twist my ankle. I felt helpless and didn’t know what to do.
Now I want to share with you all the advice that was given to me as a young cub scout which I had never forgotten and had been used to save my life. This is called the ‘STOP’ method.
‘STOP’ stands for the required steps for your best chance to get out of a given situation like this. ‘S’ stands for stop, ‘T’ stands for think, ‘O’ stands for observe, and ‘P’ means plan. If you implement these steps I guarantee you that you will have a higher chance of getting to safety.
Now you are not done yet ladies and gentlemen. Always make sure you have a cell phone with enough bars of signal to make a call. When hiking or going somewhere that is far from any signal towers, I recommend you bring a satellite phone. Therefore you can call the emergency services on the spot.
Suppose you do not have that and neither any service. What do you do? Well if you have plenty of day time, then you should start heading downhill. You’ll be bound to find some sort of road or populated area. If it is getting dark you should prepare yourself for the night by layering yourself and finding shelter. Water is the most essential to stay hydrated.
You may want to keep flares with you in case a plane flies by. If all these steps are done well and correctly, the probability of you being found will be likely.
Now as you can see on the board behind me, there are some names of mental institutions all around Sacramento. Getting lost is a serious thing and you will not always be found immediately. Sometimes it could take days, weeks, or even months. It could be a very traumatizing experience and the best way to cope with it is to speak about it.
On the other hand, those who get lost for a short amount of time, although they wouldn’t feel it then but afterwards it would seem like a thrilling sense of adventure. It would make them feel something they would have never felt before. At least, that’s what I felt that is.
To conclude my topic, I just wanted to remind this wonderful audience what a great time I have had educating you about this. I hope you all fix this information into your minds and if unfortunately, you actually do find yourself in a situation like this, whether you’re stranded in a desert or in the heart of a forest, you now won’t have to worry as much as you would have thirty minutes ago. Thank you so much for hearing me out everybody, and have a wonderful day.”