How to Properly Store Water Long Term in Storage Containers
Properly storing water long term for emergency situations is vital in food grade BPA free water containers. Improperly
treated water can lead to high bacteria and algae levels that are
potentially life-threatening or fatal. According to the Federal
Emergency Management Agency (FEMA):
should have at least a three-day supply of water and you should store
at least one gallon of water per person per day. A normally active
person needs at least one-half gallon of water daily just for drinking.
Additionally, in determining adequate quantities, take the following
Individual needs vary, depending on age, physical condition, activity, diet, and climate.
Children, nursing mothers, and ill people need more water.
Very hot temperatures can double the amount of water needed.
A medical emergency might require additional water.”
FEMA goes on to explain the how to prepare your own water storage container:
is recommended you purchase food-grade water storage containers (like
WaterBrick containers) from surplus or camping supplies stores to use
for water storage. Before filling with water, thoroughly clean the
containers with dishwashing soap and water, and rinse completely so
there is no residual soap.”
Also recommended is adding a water preserving agent such as Water Preserver™ or Oxy-Stabile Water Preserver.
Both of these products state that users can effectively store water for
5 years by purifying and keeping water bacteriologically safe. These
products can be used with regular tap or bottled water and are highly
recommended by users.
Port-Au-Prince, Haiti March 2013
It all started as a challenge. A dare if you will.
Wendell Adams was a successful homebuilder and
golf course developer in Florida when he met Jean-Michel Cousteau and
heard him lecture on the world water system. In a conversation with
Cousteau, Adams asked a fateful question, “How can I help?”
“Find a way to deliver fresh water to the
millions of people who die everyday around the world because they lack
fresh water or have tainted water,” Cousteau answered. A centuries-old
distribution dilemma dropped in the lap of a water novice.
Behind a perpetual smile and a slight Southern
accent, Wendell is just the type of man to take up the gauntlet when
it’s been thrown down.
His solution, after much research, ended up
being one of those “why didn’t I think of that?” moments. You need to
get water—and food and medicine—to places without a pipeline,
distribution system, often in rugged terrain with few roads or airports,
after natural disasters. A container. Tough, light-weight and multi-purpose.
came up with WaterBrick. Think of a “Lincoln Log” when you were a kid. A
molded plastic, hollow container with a lid and a handle. But shaped to
interlock and stack efficiently. WaterBricks can be filled with water,
food, medicines, seeds. You name it. Stacked on palettes, they can be
dropped by parachutes from an airplane after a natural disaster or in a
warzone and survive the landing. They can be trucked hundreds of miles
without leaking and use every inch of truck bed space.
So, now desperate people have the minimal
basics. Clean water. Food. Medicine. But, Adams had a further idea.
These people often lived in tent cities or had no shelter at all as
refugees displaced by disaster or war. Once the WaterBricks are emptied
of their contents, they can, of course, be reused. They can also
interlock and, filled with sand or gravel, be stacked to make fully
weight-bearing shelters, MASH hospitals, latrines, even schools. They
don’t require tools to assemble.
“The humanitarian issue was critical for me,” Adams explained. “We can do corporate social good.”
WaterBricks began rolling off the line in
2008. Then, IT happened. January 2010. A powerful earthquake pancaked
Haiti. Two hundred thousand people killed and more than 1 million
displaced in a country which has had nothing to begin with. Working
through rescue services, NGOs and UN relief efforts, WaterBricks finally
arrived in Haiti with strong corporate sponsorship and the
out-of-pocket efforts of Adams.
“You can’t imagine the devastation and the
chaos,” Adams remembers. “Haiti is a country that doesn’t function on
the best of days. This was a Hieronymus Bosch painting with real people
As in all such disasters it seems, worldwide
media attention was 24/7. Then, the cameras left for the next crisis du
jour and the Haitians were left behind. The world blinked. That’s when
the next unnatural disaster arrived.
small cadre of relief workers brought the cholera bacteria with them to
a weakened nation with no infrastructure or capacity to handle it.
Cholera is often bourn by infected water.
There have been 470,000 cases of cholera in Haiti and over 6,600 deaths—old and very young, women and children, families.
Now, WaterBricks have become tools of long-term survival, keeping clean water separated from water tainted by disease.
“We’ve shipped about 17,000 so far and we
keeping looking for partners who can help with funding and making sure
the containers actually get to them people who need them,” Adams says.
Sometimes it’s discouraging. In this place, you can destroy everything
but corruption, greed and the linings of pockets.
of this stops Adams. The demand for WaterBricks has surpassed supply
worldwide. He’s trying to find more manufacturing capacity—this time in
Asia. Why? Fukushima, Japan. March 2011, an earthquake and tsunami
triggers a nuclear reactor meltdown. Towns wiped out and water laced
with radiation. Even now, the sheer fear of another such event has
people throughout Asia wanting WaterBricks to store just in case.
In a footnote, researchers and students at New
York University are using WaterBricks for radiation tests of gamma and
neutron test walls for water at nuclear power plants.
There’s a vernacular for everything.
“WaterBrick” is a good, descriptive brand name. To Adams, it’s a “safe
storage intervention product.” It makes us remember. On the faces of
small children carrying an “intervention product,” this is very serious