Test Yourself: What Would You Choose When Faced With These Life-or-Death Situations

August 26, 2019 Updated: August 31, 2019

For most of us these days, an “extreme situation” is one where we can’t find our smartphones or get delivery from our favorite pizza place. But do you have any idea how you would respond in an emergency situation without any familiar technology to help you out?

Today, we’ll test your survival skills in a real crisis with several different scenarios. Answer the questions and see if you would survive or perish!

1. Lost in the desert

Illustration – Shutterstock | My Good Images

Imagine that you’re stuck in an endless sea of sand dunes stretching out to the horizon. There are no people in sight and most importantly nothing to eat or drink. You desperately need to preserve the little water you have. Should you:

a. Walk during the day to find help and sleep at night

b. Walk during the night and sleep during the day

c. Bury yourself under the sand until someone passes

Illustration – Shutterstock | Jan Jenka

The answer is b. Even in the hottest deserts in the world, nighttime temperatures are bearable (often half of what they are in the day). By covering yourself and conserving your energy during the heat of the day and walking while it’s cool, you’ll avoid heat exhaustion and conserve water.

2. Trapped under rubble

Imagine that there has been an earthquake and the building you are in collapses. You find yourself trapped under furniture or debris. You have no idea what conditions are like around you and are having difficulty breathing. Should you:

a. Try to push the rubble off you

b. Light a match or make a fire

c. Wrap your shirt around your face

Illustration – Shutterstock | Glynnis Jones

The answer is c. One of the major causes of death for people in earthquakes and building collapses is the mixture of dust, ashes, and broken-down glass and concrete that can suffocate you. By using your shirt, you’ll have an effective filter until the dust settles.

3. Approached by a shark

Illustration – Shutterstock | wildestanimal

For anyone who has seen Jaws, it’s their ultimate fear. You’re swimming in the sea, splashing around and having fun with your friends, when all of a sudden, you see a huge shark coming right for you. Should you:

a. Try to jump on top of it

b. Turn back to shore and swim as fast as you can

c. If it comes for you, try to jab it in the eyes and gills.

Illustration – Shutterstock | Lukas Walter

The answer is c. Trying to escape will make the shark more likely to attack you. If you stay incredibly still, it might swim past and keep going. If it tries to ram or bite you, the most sensitive places are its eyes and gills, so that’s where you should strike.

4. Caught by a tornado

The wind starts to blow like crazy, the sky turns a strange, greenish color, and you see the characteristic funnel cloud approaching. Should you:

a. Run away as fast as you can

b. Climb to the highest point nearby

c. Hide in a hole or low place

Illustration – Shutterstock | Rasica

The answer is c. The safest place to shelter from the flying debris stirred up by tornadoes is inside a trench or ditch, as low as possible. You should duck and cover your head with your hands.

5. Attacked by a swarm of bees

We’ve all seen angry swarms of bees or wasps on nature shows and probably felt more than a bit of terror at the sight. The idea of getting stung all over your body is a truly terrible one. Should you:

a. Hide in a dark place

b. Fall to the ground

c. Try to run away

Illustration – Shutterstock | Darios

The answer is a. Bees have difficulty seeing in the dark, so the best thing that you can do is to get out of the light and into a cave, under a bush, or anywhere else that is dimly lit.

6. Trapped in a falling elevator

Another worst nightmare for many people, especially those who have seen The Towering Inferno. Being trapped inside is bad, but imagine plunging dozens of floors. Should you:

a. Squeeze yourself against the side

b. Lie down on the floor

c. Jump up in the air

Illustration – Shutterstock | gualtiero boffi

The answer is b. By spreading yourself on the floor, you’ll minimize the shock when the elevator hits bottom and will have a better chance of surviving the impact.

7. Falling through ice

It’s winter and you’re walking on a lake, maybe going fishing or just enjoying the snow and quiet. All of sudden, the ice gives way and you fall into the freezing-cold water. Should you:

a. Pull yourself out

b. Break the ice to move toward the shore

c. Take off your clothes

Illustration – Shutterstock | RussieseO

The answer is a. The ice will be strongest in the spot just next to where you fell in. If you make your body horizontal and find the thickest edge nearest to you, you can pull yourself out safely by spreading your weight as much as possible.

8. Attacked by a bull

Imagine you’re having a quiet walk through the countryside when all of a sudden, a raging bull charges you. Should you:

a. Charge at it

b. Freeze and toss an item of clothing away from yourself

c. Lie down on your back

Illustration – Shutterstock | alberto clemares exposito

The answer is b. Bulls respond strongly to movement. If you throw something as it charges, its instinct will be to go for that instead, allowing you to escape.

How did you do? Do you know how to respond in a life-or-death situation? For more tips and tricks, watch the video below, and in the meantime, stay safe!