Will Clean Water Be Available?
During an emergency or disaster situation it often happens that electric power is lost. As our homes basically run on electricity, this will mean not only the loss of the ability to heat the house, but also means that there will not be any water available from the tap. No one can live very long without water, and certain conditions, such as very hot weather or dry weather during the winter can mean that dehydration can occur fairly quickly. Being prepared for a power outage ahead of time will mean that you and your family will be able to have adequate water until normal conditions are restored.
Emergency Water Supply
If you have provided an emergency water supply for yourself and your family, you will be able to have clean drinking water for however long you have provided for. A gallon a day per person is considered adequate, and a supply for three days is suggested. However, having enough for a week is probably a better idea. Bottled water from the grocery can be used, and this usually has a shelf life of several years. Make sure you keep an eye on the sell by date and rotate water when it approaches that time. You can bottle your tap water ahead of time, too. Be sure you use clean containers and label the bottles with the date. This water will last 6 months, at which time it should be poured out and replaced. There are also Water Bottles with built in filters allowing you to use any available water and not worry about the quality of it.
Water Purification Tablets
There are basically two kinds of purification tablets, those based on chlorine and those based on iodine. Both make good short-term solutions to possibly unsafe water, but iodine tablets are probably the better choice as chlorine tablets will not remove giardia or cysts. Katadyn Water Purification Tablets are an excellent choice and will help to assure your family’s safety.
There are several different water filters available that can make sure that a safe, pure supply of water is available during any emergency. One thing to beware of is that ‘pitcher filters’ will not purify water, these filters are only designed to remove the chlorine taste from tap water and have no capability to clean pathogens or contaminants out of the water, you will need a specially designed filter to do this.
A counter top, gravity feed filter is probably the best solution to a questionable water supply. Once the electricity is out and you are dipping into a stream or lake for your water, you will definitely want to make sure that all harmful elements are removed. Although water may look clean, it can harbor bacteria, viruses, giardia, cysts, protozoa, heavy metals in solution, and chemicals. A quality filter will remove all these and provide you and your family with safe water to drink. In order to use these filters, water is poured into the upper chamber and drips down into the lower as it is purified. No electricity is needed. While these filters are expensive, they are a good deal cheaper than a trip to the emergency room.
Be aware, too, that whole house water filters will be useless during a power outage, you will need a filter that does not rely on electricity in any way.