Best First Aid Kit For Hiking In 2021

First Aid Kit For Hiking

Published: July 14, 2021

With years of experience in hiking and backpacking, we’ve encountered multiple accidents, burns, splinters, ankle-twisting events, and so much more. Thankfully, we’ve always come prepared for these kinds of events to ensure that everyone is safe and can still enjoy camping.

A first aid kit is one of the most essential items that you need to bring whenever you’re planning to go camping. Whether it’s a quick backpacking trip or a week-long family camping trip, having the right first aid kit can help you with small to large scale injuries.

We have the Surviveware Small First Aid Kit as our best overall first aid kit. We also included the best bang for the buck, high-end kits, for lightweight trips, mini kits, first aid for large groups, and basecamp uses.

Best First Aid Kit: Our Quick Answer

 

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Best overall first aid kit

1. Surviveware Small First Aid Kit

Surviveware Small First Aid Kit

Click to view on amazon.com.

Weight: 13.6oz

Dimensions: 5.5” x 7.5” x 3.5”

Type of Gloves: Nitrile Gloves

First Aid Book: Yes

We chose the Surviveware Small First Aid Kit as the best overall product because the items that are included in this set are all essential, and can be used by both novice and medical professionals. It has a great build, and can hold during your extreme adventures. It’s also lightweight, compact, and affordable considering its quality.

What we like about the Surviveware Small Kit is that everything that is included in this kit is all well-thought-out. For instance, you’ll find a removable CPR kit with visual and detailed instructions that will allow anyone to perform CPR whenever needed.

Unlike in a lot of first aid kits, you’ll find a comprehensive first aid guide. Most of the tools in this kit can be found in the guide, which can teach you how to use them effectively. If given the chance to choose, most campers pick this, kit because it has almost complete quality tools.

Another feature worth noting is this kit’s durability. You’ll indeed find that the tools and the bag itself are all high-quality. The case is made with high denier nylon, and has large zippers that can withstand multiple trips and uses.

The content of this kit is all protected by resealable bags (for reusable items), or sealed packages for one-time use items. There’s a 4-inch wide elastic pressure bandage that is elastic enough to put pressure on any injury. Also, there are tourniquet and trauma shears that are made with high-quality materials compared to that of other kits in this price range.

Lastly, we’d like to recommend what Surviveware has done to make this kit one of the most organized products in this review — the multiple mesh pockets with labels to ensure that you can get what you need without having to rummage the entire bag.

What we didn’t like about the Surviveware Small First Aid Kit, on the other hand, is that there are no medications included in the package. Although, the kit has allocated space where you can put your personal medications.


 

Best bang for the buck

2. Adventure Medical Kits Mountain Series Hiker

Adventure Medical Kits Mountain Series Hiker

Click to view on amazon.com.

Weight: 7.2oz

Dimensions: 6.5” x 3” x 5.5”

Type of Gloves: Nitrile Gloves

First Aid Book: Yes

Prioritizing your safety on every one of your trips should not be expensive. If you’re into quick day-hike trips and short adventures with your partner, friend, or a few family members, the Adventure Medical Kits Mountain Series Hiker could be the best choice for you, because it’s affordable and is an excellent first aid kit.

What we like about the Adventure Medical Kits Hiker is that it’s one of the lightest sets in our review, as well as one of the most affordable, and most efficient first aid kits we’ve tested. Weighing only 7.2 ounces, you can easily put this kit inside your hiking backpack, and go anywhere you want to go.

Of course, the durability of the first aid kit is an essential factor, and the Hiker would not be left behind in this category either. It’s indeed made with heavy-duty nylon that can handle your adventures for many years to come.

Also, we were quite surprised at how organized the setting is inside. You’ll see sealed pouches with zippers and labels to ensure that you’ll be able to find what you’re looking for, even in the face of an emergency.

When it comes to the usefulness of the medications and tools inside the first aid kit, the Hiker will surely not disappoint you. First off, it has a 160-page medicine book that anyone can understand. It has all sorts of wound care assortment items as well, which you can restock with the help of Adventure Medical Kits customer service. This means that you don’t have to reserve a cabinet full of restocking supplies for this kit.

Additionally, you’ll find a full-size, medical-grade trauma shear, a pair of nitrile gloves, a medical tape, and other small items you’ll need, just in case an accident occurs. There is also a small amount of medication inside this kit, including some aspirin, ibuprofen, antihistamine, and acetaminophen.

What we didn’t like about the Adventure Medical Kits Series Hiker, however, is that the medical tape that’s included in this kit is not made of high-quality materials (although we understand this considering its price range). We suggest that you replace this tape with a better cloth athletic tape for any ankle injuries.

Also, we recommend that you put all the reusable items into a resealable bag, because all the items may end up getting mixed together once you open them and put them back inside their corresponding pockets.

Lastly, we ended up protecting the trauma shears with gauze pads because they may rip apart the nylon bag from the inside. It’s big and sharp enough that we find it hard to return it neatly inside the provided package.


 

Best high-end first aid kit

3. Lightning X First Aid Trauma Bag

Lightning X First Aid Trauma Bag

Click to view on amazon.com.

Weight: 10lbs.

Dimensions: 19” x 15” x 9”

Type of Gloves: Exam Gloves

First Aid Book: Yes

The Lightning X First Aid Trauma Big is considered by many medical professionals as one of the most complete first aid kits on the market today. With its quality tools and medications, as well as its durable kit bag, it’s the go-to bag for campers, who are serious when it comes to attending medical emergencies.

What we like about the Lightning X Trauma Bag is that tools and medications that you might think of when you’re out hiking in the woods are included in this kit. You’ll find some alcohol wipes, a stethoscope, antibiotic ointments, blood pressure cuff, iodine wipes, bandage shears, tweezers, and so much more.

Durability is also not an issue with this first aid bag. There are padded shoulder straps that help ease the heavy weight lifting of this bag. You’ll also find reflective stitches into the webbing of the pack, which allows you to locate it fast, even in the middle of the night.

Also, you’ll be happy to know that this bag is water-resistant. This allows you to store it on your trailer truck, or bring it with you on every car camping trip, without worrying about getting it damaged when it rains.

Another thing that we like about this bag is that it comes with a limited lifetime warranty for all the products that are included in this kit, so you don’t have to worry about having a hard time refilling the tools and medications.

The only thing that we didn’t like about the Lightning X First Aid Trauma Bag is that it can easily get disorganized. Although there are zippered pockets on the side of the bag, there are no separation compartments in the middle of the bag. This means that you’ll have to rummage inside the bag before actually finding the item that you’re looking for.

We suggest that you purchase resealable packages that will allow you to separate each item and organize the bag yourself. Overall, this trauma Bag is one of the best high-end first aid kits on the market today.


 

Best first aid kits for lightweight trips

4. Adventure Medical Kits Ultralight and Watertight .7 First Aid Kit

Adventure Medical Kits Ultralight and Watertight .7 First Aid Kit

Click to view on amazon.com.

Weight: 5.92oz

Dimensions: 7.5” x 10” x 10”

Type of Gloves: Nitrile Gloves

First Aid Book: No

The Adventure Medical Kits Ultralight and Watertight .7 First Aid Kit is considered by many hikers and experts as one of the best kits for lightweight trips. You’ll find all the essential tools and medications in this small resealable, zippered bag, that’s compact and easy to store.

What we like about the Ultralight/Watertight .7 kit is that, even though it’s compact and lightweight, you’ll find quality content that you’ll usually find in bigger kits. This kit focuses on cleaning and bandaging wounds, if you ever encounter such problems. You’ll find non-adherent dressings, gauze sponges, a sterile gauze, and several band-aids. Also, there are mole foam shaped like pre-cut donuts for any blisters you might encounter. Lastly, there are some wound care ointments and medications, like Ibuprofen, anti-histamines, and Tylenol inside the pack.

Since this kit only has a limited amount of medications and tools, we only recommend bringing it when you’re traveling solo or for a quick day trip. If you want to bring this with you on long family trips, we suggest that you also bring a bigger kit that can accommodate a large group of people.

We give the Ultralight/Watertight .7 kit high ratings in terms of durability, because it’s one of those minimalist designs, but it already has a reversed waterproof zipper, taped seams, and it’s made with silicone-coated nylon.

What we didn’t like about the Adventure Medical Kits Ultralight and Watertight .7 first aid kit is that it doesn’t come with a hard case. This means that, if you try to stick it up too much on your backpack, you might end up squishing all the content inside.


 

5. First Aid Only 299 Pieces All-Purpose First Aid Kit

First Aid Only 299 Pieces All-Purpose First Aid Kit

Click to view on amazon.com.

Weight: 19oz

Dimensions: 9” x 6” x 2”

Type of Gloves: Nitrile Gloves

First Aid Book: Yes

The First Aid Only 299 Pieces Kit is one of the most affordable and lightweight packs on the market today. But don’t be deceived, even though it says it has 299 pieces, nearly 200 of them are bandages. Nevertheless, if you want to bring a first aid kit that can cover your quick trips, this could still be a great choice.

What we like about the First Aid Only 299 Pieces Kit is that it’s inexpensive, compact, and can be easily carried around. For just under $20, you’ll have a kit that can help you respond in a quick manner for minor injuries and wounds.

Before starting with the content, it’s important to note that this is a nylon carrying case, which makes it durable enough to handle a couple of trips. On the outside, everything seems to be set up accordingly, especially on the packaging. But we were surprised by what we’ve seen inside.

We were welcomed with clear plastic separators filled with bandages, ointments, medications, and more plastic tools. Most of the medications had expiration dates one or two years away, which means that you have to constantly check and monitor your supplies.

Since this is one of the cheapest first aid kits on the market, we didn’t expect too much. But if all you need are bandages, a couple of medications, ointments, and emergency tools, then this could work for you.

What we didn’t like about the First Aid Only 299 Pieces Kit, on the other hand, is that the designer didn’t think about organizing this kit at all. If we wanted to get something out, we had to dig in, and eventually spill some content just to get the item that we need. After using what we needed, it was almost impossible to return everything to its place, so we had to just stuff it back in.

The other thing that we didn’t like about this first aid kit is that the medical tape is low class; it’s just the same as using masking tape. Plus, the tools are all made with plastic, including the tweezers and trauma sheers.


 

Best mini first aid kits

6. Adventure Medical Kits Smart Travel First Aid Kit

Adventure Medical Kits Smart Travel First Aid Kit

Click to view on amazon.com.

Weight: 17oz

Dimensions: 7.5” x 6” x 2.5”

Type of Gloves: Nitrile Gloves

First Aid Book: Yes

When it comes to having all the essentials you’ll need while traveling, nothing can be more perfect than having the Adventure Medical Kits Smart Travel First Aid Kit by your side. The supplies included in this pack will allow you to treat light illnesses and minor injuries before you can reach any clinic or hospital.

What we like about the Smart Travel is that all the tools and medications that are included in this first aid kit are all high-quality, which can be expected in all Adventure Medical Kits products. All the over-the-counter medications are individually packed and have their own label, which helps access them easily.

There are also bandages, care pads, and other wound supplies that are all sterile and perfectly sealed. You’ll also find a 220-page medical handbook that provides information on many different ailments and injuries.

Also, if you’re out in other countries where communication can become a problem, there’s a two-sided card that provides visual aids that can help you point to others what you’re feeling. Medications include antidiarrheals, oral rehydration salts, and more.

In terms of durability, this first aid kit is made with heavy-duty nylon denier fabric that resists abrasion, and lets you carry it around without having to worry about wear and tear. The total weight is 17oz, but if you need a lighter kit, you can remove the medical book, thus lessening the weight by 7oz.

What we didn’t like about the Adventure Medical Kits Smart Travel First Aid Kit however is that there are no zippers to lock and protect the items inside. Since it has a tri-fold design, a spilled bottle accident can do great harm to the kit’s content.

We suggest that you separate the supplies and put them in a resealable bag to ensure that it will be safe. You can also put the entire kit inside a waterproof bag for added protection.


 

7. Coleman All Purpose Mini First Aid Kit

Coleman All Purpose Mini First Aid Kit

Click to view on amazon.com.

Weight: 2.1oz

Dimensions: 3.88” x 2.5” x 0.88”

Type of Gloves: N/A

First Aid Book: No

If you’re looking for a mini first aid kit that you can easily bring with you anywhere you go, and can help you ease small injuries or illnesses, then the Coleman All Purpose Mini First Aid Kit can be the best choice for you.

What we like about the All Purpose Mini first aid kit is that it has all the right content that you’ll need to provide minor first aid calls. The kit itself is made with a crush-resistant nostalgic brushed metal tin plate with a hinged top, which means that even if you stuff it inside your backpack or trunk for many days, you’ll be sure that the content inside is intact.

You’ll find 27 contents inside the kit, which are mostly comprised of different bandages, wipes, safety pins, antibiotic ointment, and a razor blade. Unlike the other kits in this review, there are no shears and tweezers, which means that you’ll only have access to minor injuries.

We find that this mini kit serves well if you’re planning to store it inside your car while you’re on a trip. We suggest that, if you’re going on long trips, you also bring a complete first aid kit that has great emergency tools to complement this Coleman Kit.

We didn’t find any downside to the Coleman All Purpose Mini First Aid Kit except for the fact that it’s not as comprehensive as the other products. Nevertheless, if you’re just looking for a simple kit that can do an amazing job in case of small incidents, this one is great for you.


 

Best travel first aid kits for long trips and large groups

8. Adventure Medical Kits Mountain Series Explorer

Adventure Medical Kits Mountain Series Explorer

Click to view on amazon.com.

Weight: 21oz

Dimensions: 7” x 6” x 4.5”

Type of Gloves: Nitrile Gloves

First Aid Book: Yes

The Adventure Medical Kits Mountain Series Explorer makes prioritizing your family during a long trip its top priority. It has a durable, water-resistant case, and is well-organized. Plus, all the content is high-quality, and it’s affordable considering its class.

What we like about the Explorer is that it’s a well-thought-out first aid kit that can support a group of people or long trips. Since Adventure Medical Kits is a well-known brand that manufactures high-quality kits and medical contents, it is no surprise that this is one of the top products on the market today.

First and foremost, we would like to recommend the water-resistant coated nylon case, which protects the contents in almost any weather. The interior organization looks great, as all the items inside the kit are individually wrapped in plastic.

Next to look at is the content. The Explorer has everything you need to help people with injuries, from wound care and blisters, to bandaging sprained ankles, making a sling and swath, and having a number of medications that you and your family might need, even when you’re in the middle of nowhere. These medications are, but are not limited to, antihistamine, anti-diarrheal, acetaminophen for pain relief, fever relief, ibuprofen, and medicine for cold and flu. We also found a CPR mask, which you’ll not commonly find in most first aid kits these days.

Just like other Adventure Medical kits, you’ll find a 220-page medical book that comes extremely handy during emergencies. Although, if you’re already familiar with how first aid works, you can opt not to bring this book, and reduce your pack’s weight by as much as 7 ounces.

The only thing that we didn’t like about the Adventure Medical Kits Mountain Series Explorer is that it only has one nitrile glove included in it. For an average-price first aid kit that has almost everything you need to respond to an emergency, it’s quite surprising that it only has one glove. Nevertheless, you can add two or three additional gloves in the pack for safety purposes.


 

9. Be Smart Get Prepared 326 Pieces First Aid Kit

Be Smart Get Prepared 326 Pieces First Aid Kit

Click to view on amazon.com.

Weight: 48oz

Dimensions: 12” x 13.5” x 4.5”

Type of Gloves: Nitrile Gloves

First Aid Book: Yes

If you’re looking for a first aid kit that can handle a large group of people, or if you’re planning for a long drive away from home, then the Be Smart Get Prepared 326 Pieces First Aid Kit should be at the top of your list of things to buy. With its durable case and a large amount of supplies inside, you can surely assist anyone who has minor injuries.

What we like about the Be Smart Get Prepared first aid kit is that it has everything you’ll need for non-life-threatening injuries. A large quantity of bandages, antiseptic towelettes, alcohol swabs, finger splints, and gauze pads will help you feel comfortable while traveling.

This kit comes with a very large briefcase that you can easily hang behind a door or a wall, making this the go-to kit in an office setting. But if you’re like us, — into car and RV camping, — then this could still be a big help for you.

Unlike the other products in this review that usually only have one pair of nitrile gloves, this kit has four pairs of gloves, making it a lot more advantageous. Also, you’ll find a CPR mask that can protect you and the person that you’re helping from unnecessary infections. There are also some aspirin and antacid in this kid.

Additionally, Be Smart Get Prepared has an option for you to restock the medicine contents in your kit.

What we didn’t like about the Be Smart Get Prepared 326 Pieces First Aid Kit is that it has low-quality scissors and plastic tweezers. We recommend that you replace them with quality forceps and trauma shears.

Also, the fact that it weighs 48 ounces is a big downside to the kit. Although we understand the case itself is heavy, and there are a lot of contents, this is the reason why we recommend that you only purchase and use this kit if you’re traveling in your car, and/or with a large group of people.


 

Best first aid kits for basecamp use

10. Compact First Aid Kit 228 Pieces

Compact First Aid Kit 228 Pieces

Click to view on amazon.com.

Weight: 1.8lbs

Dimensions: 8.3” x 6.3” x 3.2”

Type of Gloves: Vinyl Gloves

First Aid Book: Yes

If you’re looking for a permanent basecamp first aid kit, then you should definitely take a look at the Compact First Aid Kit 228 Pieces. Not only is the case durable enough that it can last for years, but the content inside can help you with both minor and major injuries.

What we like about the Compact First Aid Kit 228 Pieces is that it’s designed to be simple enough on the outside, but also well-organized and easy to understand inside. There are three main compartments in this kit, which separate the tools, medications, and reusable items.

The case itself is shockproof and weather-resistant, allowing you to bring it anywhere you go. Compared to the previous products, this kit is fairly lightweight, considering the case and the content.

In this kit, you’ll find an assortment of medications and tools. Like any basecamp, you can expect that everything should be complete. There are adhesive wound dressings in this kit, as well as sterile eye pads, high-grade bandages, sterile gauze swabs, and a tourniquet. Not only that, but there are also some disposable CPR masks, scissors, vinyl gloves, and more.

We didn’t find any downside to this kit. It’s worth remembering though that, since this kit is heavy, bulky, and is designed to accommodate a lot of people and any types of injuries, it will be difficult to carry it around. That is the reason why we recommend this kit for pure basecamp use.


 

11. Swiss Safe Premium 200 Piece First Aid Kit

Swiss Safe Premium 200 Piece First Aid Kit

Click to view on amazon.com.

Weight: 16oz.

Dimensions: 7.5” x 2.5” x 5”

Type of Gloves: PVC Gloves

First Aid Book: Yes

Next on our list of the best first aid kit for basecamp use is the Swiss Safe Premium 200-Piece kit. We’ve chosen this product over multiple kits because it’s compact, has literally 200 pieces of high-quality tools and medications that will help you in an emergency, and the design is great for camping use.

What we like about the Premium 200 Piece is that the external design is simple enough that everyone will immediately know that it is a first aid kit. There are no unnecessary zippers, pouches, or whatnot.

Once you open the kit, you’ll see an organized set of tools and medications. There’s a mesh pocket, a clear plastic pocket, and mini pockets on the other side. The contents are all well-organized, and have specific labels on them.

The kit is complete with bandages, antiseptic clean wipes, relief pads, high-quality bandage rolls, cotton balls, and gauze pads. Additionally, there’s one CPR face mask, metal tweezers, trauma shears, a whistle, a mini-compass, tapes, dressings, gloves, and so much more.

We didn’t find any downside to the Swiss Safe Premium 200-Piece first aid kit either. First and foremost, it has all the tools and contents that you’ll need in case an emergency happens. But, we suggest that you bring along with you some medications for pain relief, fever relief, and some anti-diarrheal just to make sure.


Best First Aid Kit Comparison Table

Foto First Aid Kit Weight Dimensions Type of Gloves First Aid Book
Surviveware Small First Aid Kit

1. Surviveware Small First Aid Kit

13.6oz5.5" x 7.5" x 3.5"Nitrile GlovesYes
Adventure Medical Kits Mountain Series Hiker

2. Adventure Medical Kits Mountain Series Hiker

7.2oz6.5" x 3" x 5.5"Nitrile GlovesYes
Lightning X First Aid Trauma Bag

3. Lightning X First Aid Trauma Bag

10lbs19" x 15" x 9"Exam GlovesYes
Adventure Medical Kits Ultralight and Watertight .7 First Aid Kit

4. Adventure Medical Kits Ultralight and Watertight .7 First Aid Kit

5.92oz7.5" x 10" x 10"Nitrile GlovesNo
First Aid Only 299 Pieces All-Purpose First Aid Kit

5. First Aid Only 299 Pieces All-Purpose First Aid Kit

19oz9" x 6" x 2"Nitrile GlovesYes
Adventure Medical Kits Smart Travel First Aid Kit

6. Adventure Medical Kits Smart Travel First Aid Kit

17oz7.5" x 6" x 2.5"Nitrile GlovesYes
Coleman All Purpose Mini First Aid Kit

7. Coleman All Purpose Mini First Aid Kit

2.1oz3.88" x 2.5" x 0.88"N/ANo
Adventure Medical Kits Mountain Series Explorer

8. Adventure Medical Kits Mountain Series Explorer

21oz7" x 6" x 4.5"Nitrile GlovesYes
Be Smart Get Prepared 326 Pieces First Aid Kit

9. Be Smart Get Prepared 326 Pieces First Aid Kit

48oz12" x 13.5" x 4.5"Nitrile GlovesYes
Compact First Aid Kit 228 Pieces

10. Compact First Aid Kit 228 Pieces

1.8lbs8.3" x 6.3" x 3.2" Vinyl GlovesYes
Swiss Safe Premium 200 Piece First Aid Kit

11. Swiss Safe Premium 200 Piece First Aid Kit

16oz.7.5" x 2.5" x 5"PVC GlovesYes

What should you look for in a first aid kit?

Having your own first aid kit allows you to be more prepared in case anything happens while you’re out camping. Whether you’re trekking a new mountain road, camping out with your family and friends, or just going on a solo adventure, it’s vital that you have the right tools and medication with you.

Looking for a first aid kit might seem not important at all, but you’ll be surprised by how many kits differ in content, case quality, durability, and usefulness. In this section, we’ll break down the things that you need to consider when purchasing a first aid kit.

Pre-made first aid kits save you the time, stress, and money of buying many small items that you’ll need. These kits come in many different sizes, weights, and content, so be sure that you check all of them properly.

Here are some things to consider when you’re looking for a first aid kit:

  1. Group size 

Individual first aid kits are more compact, and have fewer contents than kits designed for large groups. The first thing that you need to do before buying a kit is to consider how many people the kit can accommodate. Once you answer this question, we can move on to the other parts.

  1. Weight

Compactness and weight will be determined if you already know how many people will go with you.

If you’re a solo backpacker, you should look for a kit that is small enough to stuff inside your backpack, and lightweight enough that you don’t need to worry about going over your designed carrying weight.

If you’re going to travel with a group or by car, you can choose a first aid kit that’s larger and heavier, since you can leave it in your car or distribute some of the contents to your group.

  1. Durability

Of course, constant traveling may mean that your backpack or car truck can be full of many items, which is why considering the durability of the kit’s case is vital.

Some first aid kit cases are only made of a zippered pouch, which means that when pushed together, the content may spill inside (especially if there are ointments). There are also cases where the kit is not water-resistant, which can cause a problem if bottled water is spilled inside, or if you’re traveling in wet conditions.

  1. Tools and medications

This is one of the most important factors that you need to consider. Most kits have bandages, ointments, alcohol wipes, gloves, and pain medications. More sophisticated kits also have tweezers, trauma shears, CPR masks, dressings, and more.

Make sure to check the content before you actually buy one. A lot of kits nowadays have tools inside, but you’ll be surprised that these are made of plastics that literally can’t help you when you’re in need.

Also, it’s vital that the kit that you choose has a first aid guide that can instruct you on what to do when there’s an emergency. We also love to add more pairs of gloves to our kits to ensure that we are fully prepared for what might happen.

  1. Special needs

The last thing that you want to consider when looking for a first aid kit is its versatility, and by this, we mean having extra space inside the kit. Make sure to add your prescribed meds (if you or your family have any) to the kit.

Additionally, if you’re traveling to countries or locations where there’s a risk of poison ivy or other illnesses, make sure that you come fully prepared, and put the necessary items inside the kit as well.

 

Final thoughts

Going to camps and adventures should not be dangerous at all. But having your own first aid kit can help you or other people in dire times. By following the factors that we’ve mentioned earlier, you’ll be fully prepared for whatever may happen.

Once you know that you’ve considered all these factors, you can check out the products that we’ve reviewed above, and choose the one that best fits your needs. Remember, it doesn’t need to be expensive if you know the contents that you’re looking for.

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