For the defensive-minded and those living a prepared lifestyle I have spoken many times about flashlight carry and use. In a previous Gunnersden, article, The Best EDC Flashlights and How to Use Them, I listed the top choices for lights and methods for using a light and a firearm together.
While it may seem obvious as to the reasons you may need a flashlight, most people rarely do so. It is much like a handgun, if it’s not on you at all times, what good is it?
So even though you may or may not have thought about daily uses of a handheld light let’s take a look at five solid reasons to have a light on you at all times.
If you are carrying a handgun as part of your daily life, then carrying a flashlight goes hand in hand with that, literally. The day could come when you need to draw your pistol in a defensive encounter, and you have reduced lighting, a flashlight helps you identify your threat. A legal and responsible must!
It’s much like teaching fledgling hunters not to shoot at a game animal until you can clearly identify your target.
Same for a dim light situation, you can’t risk shooting at movement or a shadowy figure if you are not certain a threat to your life exists.
The fact is that 50 to 60 percent of defensive encounters occur in some sort of reduced light environment.
To Blind or Disorient
The small flashlight technology today is off the charts. I routinely carry a light that is 350 lumens in brightness. Powerful enough to temporarily blind anyone within room distance that poses a threat.
Additionally, my light has a strobe feature that is even more disorienting in a defensive encounter. I have personally used this feature on more than one occasion to give me the upper hand.
In most cases, the blinding and/or disorienting capability of such a light gives me time to relocate, identify and escape or react appropriately as the case calls for.
My EDC light is the Streamlight ProTac 2L. I have both used and carried it for years. The size is conducive to EDC and I like the simple settings the light offers, high brightness, strobe, and low brightness.
In today’s world of power grids going down there is even more of a reason to carry a light on a daily basis. You may need to navigate my way out of complete or partial darkness at any moment.
If I decide to hit a hiking trail or spend a day in the backcountry I have a light on my person at all times because it is a part of my EDC.
A good flashlight is part of any outdoor survival gear. But perhaps you live in a rural area with little to no lighting and need to signal EMS.
Nothing like a high-lumen light pointed toward responding emergency services to say…I am over here!
As a Defensive Tool
I alluded to using the flashlight intensity itself as a blinding or disorienting tool. But the flashlight and its sturdy housing can make for a great striking tool.
With a fist hold and my thumb over the end cap, a strike to the sternum, neck or temple provides a solid defensive response if it comes down to that.
And I can carry a flashlight on any public transportation including a commercial airliner.
The quality flashlights on the market today are numerous and affordable. The Streamlight ProTac 2L can be purchased for around $50. But there are dozens of other good choices to suit your needs.
The bottom line, I carry a handgun, two blades, a tourniquet, and a flashlight on my person every single day. Without a doubt, I use the flashlight weekly…one way or another.
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