26 Nov How to sterilize water during an emergency
Would you know how to sterilize water during an emergency? Although uncommon in Canada, hurricanes, floods and even water mains breaking can interrupt regular water service.
Typically, in an emergency situation, the authorities recommend that you drink sterilized water, or bottled water, to avoid any disease-causing microorganisms and harmful pollutants that could be in your water.
The following steps will help you sterilize water that you do have available. In the event of an emergency situation, use only sterilized water for drinking, cleaning, preparing meals, cooking, and brushing your teeth. Just a few drops of contaminated water is enough to make you sick.
Methods to Sterilize Water:
1) Boiling: If have power during the emergency situation, boiling your water is a good way to sterilize water.
- Let cloudy water settle. You can filter it through a coffee filter or paper towel to get rid of sediment.
- Bring the water to a rolling boil for one to three minutes (high altitudes should boil for three minutes).
- If the water tastes flat, add a pinch of salt and stir.
2) Household bleach: If you cannot boil the water, you can use regular chlorine bleach. Use only unscented, food grade regular bleach.
- If the water is cloudy let the sediment settle. Filter the water through a coffee filter or paper towel.
- Use a clean medicine dropper to drop the bleach into the water. Add six drops of bleach per gallon of water. If your water is cloudy or very cold, double the amount.
- Stir the mixture and let stand for 30 minutes. Your water should have a bit of a chlorine smell. If you do not smell chlorine , you need to repeat the process and let stand again.
- If that water tastes too much like chlorine , pour it into a new container and let stand for an hour.
Various water treatment systems are also extremely beneficial during emergencies or during regular use. Using gravity water filtration units or UV Water Disinfection systems are great ways to make sure that your water is safe to use at home.