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What is a Radio Flashlight?

Article Details
  • Written By: Tricia Ellis-Christensen
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 04 November 2016
  • Copyright Protected:
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    Conjecture Corporation
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A radio flashlight is a helpful combination tool in an emergency or simply if there is an extended power outage. Since power outages mean access to most information sources like plug-in radios, TVs, and computers, is cut off, people may desire a way to have emergency lighting and get valuable details about the current situation. The radio flashlight is not just for emergencies though. Many people may enjoy having these for things like camping trips too, where they won’t have access to a power source.

Many types of the radio flashlight have the option to be powered via a hand crank. This can be helpful since it means people won’t have to bring batteries along for this purpose. Those types that can be most useful in an emergency may have the option of battery power, or recharging through cigarette or power outlets in cars. Some have solar power options too, which can make them helpful if they’re out in the open. A few will even do things like charge cellphones.

When choosing a radio flashlight people may want to consider the types of channels it receives. Most will receive AM and FM channels, but another valuable thing to get is to the weather band, which can broadcast emergency information about weather systems or other disasters. Some of these radios are also built to receive short wave signals, which can allow listeners to hear international broadcasting. Depending upon the emergency, understanding information being given elsewhere may be important too.

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While the radio flashlight may be a great tool, and they typically only weigh a few pounds, it’s a good idea to have some flashlights or powered lanterns on hand too. People may find carrying the flashlight a little cumbersome, and a smaller light might be useful for certain things like inspecting a car that stops working in the middle of the night or reading a map. One advantage to the radio flashlight, though, is that the lights can frequently be turned on and set down on a stable base. This may be a little harder to accomplish with a round flashlight.

There are numerous places to purchase a radio flashlight. They’re available in many outdoor supply and camping supply stores and at plenty of big box and department stores. A considerable selection exists online, and price for these can vary greatly. Since people do often use these for emergency kits, it helps to purchase those rated by organizations like the Red Cross. Red Cross approved radio flashlights tend to cost between $50-100 US Dollars (USD) or more if they have more features.

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