Other than Ghostbuster “who you gonna call” when something goes bad, I know I’m guilty of remembering like one phone number and letting my cell phone do the rest. But the reality is the cell phone might not always be there or the best option for getting the help you need; I remember as a young Marine having “phone trees” on small, laminated cards to put in our wallets in case we had to get some help out in town and when overseas having points of contact for assistance off base.
I have carried on with this especially when traveling in the back country many times we are in areas with no access to the internet, but we have enough bars to make a call or send a text, we also make use of HAM radios for communication. So, when I saw Super ESSE came out with their Emergency Comms with Channel/Frequency and Telephone Number ICE card I had to pick one up. If for no other reason than the cool factor, haha.
“This patch is used an emergency call book. Reference it to hail assistance on emergency radio frequencies and channels. 4 helpful contact telephone numbers are included in the event of an emergency. The lower half of the patch contains a fill-in-the-blank ICE (In-Case-of-Emergency) Card. This information is referred to by first responders in the event of an accident so that family can be contacted. It will also provide medical services with your blood type and known allergies”. – Super ESSE
It’s a nice durable PVC patch like most of the other ones we see these days, this has been with me on backpacking trips through Joshua Tree and across Anza Borrego as well as a butt ton of day hikes attached to my trail kit and in my bag, so it has been very durable in side of my pack.
I really like the pre-loaded emergency contact information on the top half and it provides a lot of great jumping off points for a variety of radios, stuff that we just might not remember in an emergency or with unfamiliar gear.
I think one of the best pars though is the In Case of Emergency (ICE) contact area which leaves spaces for you to fill in personal information such as name, blood type, allergies, address and emergency phone numbers. Even if you don’t get this patch you should have something like this written down with you in the back country.
One thing I really love bout this patch is the storage built into the back of it. When I was working on airplanes, we used to modify our patches to keep a razor blade or fuses for a test set. Super ESSE did a great job of elevating it and the back Velcro has a laser cut slot built into it so you can throw some extra stuff into the patch that might come in handy.
Having said that I do see a couple minor improvements maybe down the road, that would be moving the slot from the middle horizon of the patch to the end vertically. My reason being for a comms (communication) patch I would like to be able to slide in a laminated card that could be a phone tree or that I could put additional numbers and information on depending on the trip. For the ICE section I would make it one solid larger piece of white that I can fill out and then have the surface area to place a piece of clear tape over to avoid fading and rubbing off of the ink.
That being said my above points are very minor good idea fairy points not deal breakers and if this is something you think you could benefit from I definitely suggest getting one. The patch is useful, I used it to check the NOAA weather channel, It has my blood type and allergies on it and its bright orange sticks out on my trail kit as something a rescuer might want to take a look at.
Check out Super ESSE or this patch which also is available as a sticker and a bunch of other neat stuff!