Emergency Preparedness

Strategies for Long Term Water Storage

It is crucial to human survival. Without it, humans can’t go on for more than three or four days. Our cells need it and it helps regulate our body temperature. Go too long without it, and our decision making abilities falter and our moods swing. Water. Survival in emergency situations depends on it.

The human body is about 60% water. It needs a constant supply in order to keep running smoothly. In times of stress and danger, water keeps our heads cool and our brains functioning correctly. If there are other dangerous elements resulting from something like a natural disaster, don’t sabotage yourself by failing to keep clean water available.

Make a plan for storing clean water that you can access in the event of an emergency. When a natural disaster like a flood or hurricane put water supplies at risk, you will want to have a supply ready. Communities rely heavily on a dependable and sanitary water supply, so if an event puts that in danger there could be panic. Avoid the rush to local markets for water by having a safe supply in store nearby.

The containers that you choose to hold the water should be clean and sanitized before filling. Try to use only new containers when you start the process, since there can be a risk of elements left behind in containers like milk jugs that are tough to spot. These can have significant effects on the cleanliness of the water. If you are choosing plastic containers, be sure to use food-grade plastics. These are identifiable by the recycling arrows and a number between 1,2,4,and 5. Carefully consider using a 1 grade container, since they are generally meant for only single use.

Glass and stainless steel containers are also options for water storage. Glass carries with it the danger of shattering, so weigh your options in this case. Glass does allow you to see inside and gauge the safety of the water visually, and that can go a long way. Stainless steel containers are an excellent option as well. You may find that these containers are more expensive than plastic, for a very similar effectiveness. Consider also the possible need to move or travel with your containers. Sturdy designs, handles, and accessible sizes are crucial if your reserves need to be relocated.

In order to determine how many containers to purchase, you’ll want to rely on the suggestion of about one gallon of water per person per day. Your supplies of water will need to keep you and anyone else with you healthy and hydrated for as long as you plan on utilizing the storage. Consider the ages and medical needs of your loved ones as well, as the younger and elderly populations are more vulnerable to the stresses that a lack of water can produce. During an emergency, water is useful for more than just drinking. It is necessary for washing any dishes, cleaning wounds, and bathing.

Finally, find a cool and dark place to keep your water stored. Any exposure to sunlight can rapidly decrease the shelf life of water, so be sure that the location is free from temperature fluctuation and light sources. The water should be stored in an orderly fashion and well labeled so that a count can be made easily. Water should be changed out at least every six months, so clear labels can be very effective.

In the event of a natural disaster or event that puts your local water supply in danger, have a cache of clean water accessible. Water is an absolute necessity for human survival and cannot be overlooked. In times of danger and stress, water keeps human bodies functioning well and keeps moods and decisions regulated. Plan out the location and the types of containers you’ll use. You can’t afford to overlook the importance of water storage for emergency situations.

 

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Steve Ference

Steve Ference

When he's not writing post-apocalyptic fiction or survival guides, Steve's snowshoeing on the Pacific Crest Trail or training for his next off-road triathlon.

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