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If I use a space tarp (basically a heavy-duty reusable space blanket) as a sunshade or as a ground tarp with the shiny side facing up, do I need to worry that someone might see it and think that I am in trouble?

People often suggest that a space blanket could be used to signal for help, would a 5ft x 7ft reflective surface be taken as a distress signal?

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    I suspect that the people who say "use a space blanket to signal for help" are talking about the case where you are known to be in trouble, and rescue is already looking for you. The space blanket says "here I am". – DJClayworth Jul 12 '16 at 16:12
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This seems unlikely—simply facing something orange to the sky doesn't get automatically detected as a request for assistance. In general, if someone isn't searching for you, no one is going to be looking to see it in the first place. A space blanket might be useful in that sense if you've already called for help somehow, or been missing long enough someone else has done so, and you can then use it to get the attention of rescuers once they're actively looking.

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