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Hands-on Gear Review
Be Smart Get Prepared 326 Piece Review
Cons: No CPR mask, poor quality tools
Bottom line: This kit is the best we've reviewed for the workplace, office, or classroom, where a large number of people need access to basic supplies.
The Be Smart Get Prepared 326 piece first aid kit is the largest kit in our review, in size, weight, and quantity of contents. It meets OSHA and ANSI guidelines on first aid kit contents in a workplace setting and is equipped to be hung on a wall or inside of a door in the home or workplace, as well as carried in a vehicle or on a boat. The contents of this kit are meant for common non-life threatening injuries such as cuts and scrapes, and the sheer quantity of these contents imply a large group using or having access to it. For a smaller first aid kit that is still able to support a group, take a peek at the Editors' Choice winning Surviveware kit, and be sure to read up on How to Choose the Best First Aid Kit.
RELATED REVIEW: The 6 Best First Aid Kits
Our Analysis and Hands-on Test Results
The Be Smart Get Prepared first aid kit is a large briefcase-sized kit that comes in a hardshell case, and is a useful resource for big groups in workplace or home settings, and the contents anticipate both high volume of users as well as most standard and non life-threatening injuries.
The contents of the Be Smart Get Prepared first aid kit are generally of good quality, coming in a durable plastic briefcase that has shelves for easy organization. Medicines and bandages comprise the majority of the kit's supplies, and these are all individually packaged making it easy to grab what you need. All the over the counter medicines (antacid tabs, aspirin, acetaminophen) have easy to read expiration dates (2 years from when we received the kit) which help in keeping contents up to date. The medicine assortment found in the Adventure Medical Kits Adventure 2.0 was more useful, including ibuprofen and diphenhydramine for allergic reactions. We liked the quality nitrile gloves found in this kit, and this was the only kit we reviewed that included more than one pair. We were less impressed by the quality of the shears and tweezers, which were flimsy and unreliable.
The Be Smart Get Prepared kit was moderately useful when compared to other contenders. Some models were able to treat the full range of medical emergencies possible in a backcountry or wilderness setting; however, as it relates to the conventional treatments likely to be found in an office environment, this kit is much more useful. It can treat a common headache, cut, sting or scrape. This model also provides a vast quantity of basic bandages and wound cleaning pads that can support a large group. There are a few additional trauma supplies such as large gauze pads and finger splints for emergencies, but this kit is meant to take care of small, non-life threatening injuries. The Surviveware Small first aid kit would not be able to support nearly as large of a group, though was much more useful overall.
Coming inside of a massive case the size of a briefcase and being able to be hung on a wall or door as well as be carried by a handle, the Be Smart Get Prepared kit is quite durable, though the design of the interior allows contents to shift and get mixed up when not mounted. The plastic tweezers and flimsy scissors used in this kit are not durable at all, and would be better replaced with the trauma shears and forceps used in the Surviveware kit.
Although this first aid kit meets the OSHA guidelines for small businesses, even they recommend that additional supplements may be necessary based on the type of work environment. We felt like for a typical office setting that the Be Smart Get Prepared Kit would be adequate and versatile enough to deal with most non-emergent situations, but for a construction job site, we would rather see more gauze pads and better quality tools like found in the Best Buy winning Surviveware Small kit. And while many workplaces also may have an AED/CPR station, there really should be a CPR mask included in this kit too. There is an option to add it on to a restocking order through Be Smart Get Prepared, however.
Tipping the scales at just over 3 pounds, the Be Smart Get Prepared first aid kit is the heaviest in our review, and so while does not score nearly as highly as some of our lightweight models like the Adventure Medical Kits Ultralight/Watertight .7, is also meant for use in a completely different setting. Designed to be wall mounted or carried in a vehicle, weight should not be a reason to avoid this product. We would have even been happier if the kit had weighed more if that meant that there were more varied supplies for a wider spectrum of emergencies.
For the home, small office, boat or RV, the Be Smart Get Prepared first aid kit offers a large number of basic first aid supplies that are able to treat a large number of people with common minor injuries. We would recommend using this kit only when in reasonably fast access to definitive medical care, not in a remote or wilderness setting.
With an MSRP of $45, the Be Smart Get Prepared 326 Piece first aid kit is an average value. You do get the mountable carrying case, but the few supplies contained within are pretty inexpensive, and the tools are of poor quality. What you are paying for is an OSHA/ANSI approved kit that has an easy reordering system when you need to stock up on depleted supplies.
For basic first aid in an office, home, school classroom or other group settings, the Be Smart Get Prepared kit can support a small to medium group as long as the injuries are relatively minor and can be treated with over the counter medications and small bandages. Any more severe injuries would need additional supplies added to the kit based on your group's needs.
— Ryan Huetter
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