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Information from the US EPA, CDC, and NAVMED

 

USE ONLY WATER THAT HAS BEEN PROPERLY DISINFECTED FOR DRINKING, COOKING, MAKING ANY PREPARED DRINK, OR FOR BRUSHING TEETH

 

 

  1. Use bottled water that has not been exposed to flood waters if it is available.

  2. If you don't have bottled water, boil water to make it safe.  Boiling water will kill most types of disease-causing organisms that may be present.  If the water is cloudy, filter it through clean clothes or allow it to settle, and draw off the clear water for boiling.  Boil the water for one minute, let it cool, and store it in clean containers with lids.

  3. If you can't boil water, you can disinfect it with household bleach.  Bleach will kill some, but not all, types of disease-causing organisms that may be in the water.  If the water is cloudy, filter it through clean clothes or allow it to settle, and draw off the clear water for disinfection.  Add 1/8 teaspoon (or 8 drops) of regular, unscented, liquid household bleach for each gallon of water, stir it well and let it stand for 30 minutes before you use it.  Store disinfected water in clean containers with lids.

  4. If you have a well that has been flooded, the water should be tested and disinfected after flood waters recede.  If you suspect your well may be contaminated, contact your local or state health department or agriculture extension agent for specific advice.

Visit the EPA webpage for more information: http://www.epa.gov/safewater/faq/emerg.html

 

DISASTER SAFETY -- Drinking Water

Use regular unscented household bleach, with 5.25% sodium hypochlorite.  Do not use non-chlorine bleach.  NEVER MIX BLEACH WITH AMMONIA or any other cleaner!  Try not to breathe bleach fumes. 

 

For disinfecting water Bleach amount Water amount Steps
Clear drinking water 1/8 teaspoon (8 drops) 1 gallon

1. Mix 1/8 teaspoon bleach per 1 gallon water

2. Let it stand for 30 minutes before using

For more information see: www.bt.cdc.gov/disasters/foodwater.asp

 

Cloudy drinking water 1/4 teaspoon (16 drops) 1 gallon

1. Mix 1/4 teaspoon bleach per 1 gallon water

2. Let it stand for 30 minutes before using

For more information see: www.bt.cdc.gov/disasters/foodwater.asp

 

 

 

Below: Unscented household liquid bleach (5.25% sodium hypochlorite) dilution table for water disinfection. 

NOTE: Water treatment plants disinfect to 1 PPM (part per million) chlorine.

Quantity (gallons) 1 PPM 5 PPM 25 PPM 50 PPM 100 PPM
5     1 tsp. 5 tsp. 2 oz.
10     1 oz. 3 tsp. 3 oz.
25   1 Tbsp. 2 oz. 4 oz. 7 oz.
50 1 tsp. 1 oz. 4 oz. 7 oz. 13 oz.
100 2 tsp. 2 oz. 7 oz. 13 oz. 26 oz.
200 1 Tbsp. 3 oz. 13 oz. 26 oz. 52 oz.
500 2 oz. 7 oz. 1 qt. 2 qt. 1 gal.
1,000 3 oz. 13 oz. 2 qt. 1 gal. 2 gal.
2,000 6 oz. 26 oz. 1 gal. 2 gal. 4 gal.
5,000 13 oz. 2 qt. 10 qt. 5 gal. 10 gal.
10,000 26 oz. 1 gal. 5 gal. 10 gal. 20 gal.
25,000 2 qt. 10 qt. 50 qt. 25 gal. 50 gal.
50,000 1 gal. 5 gal. 25 gal. 50 gal. 100 gal.

tsp. = teaspoon           1 tsp. = 1/6 oz. = 0.1666 oz.

Tbsp. = tablespoon     2 Tbsp. = 1 oz.

Oz. = ounce

Qt. = quart                  1 qt. = 32 oz.

Gal. = gallon                1 gal. = 128 oz.

1 drop = 0.05 milliliter = 0.017 oz.

 

Based on the Manual of Naval Preventive Medicine (NAVMED P-5010-6 [Rev. 7-2005])