23 March 2020

Coronavirus - From A Practical Survival Approach (6)

Tip 1. Resources Water:
Water - far more important then food. You can survive about three weeks without food. You can survive about three days without water.

In order of priority you need water for drinking, cleaning wounds, cooking, washing, cleaning general.

Dirty water can be SIVED through a bottle/container of moss, wood charcoal and sand. Dirty water can then be STERILIZED by boiling for three mins. A one min boil will do at our altitudes, but I always say on training courses - boil for three mins to be safe.

Info on different methods of sterilizing water here; however boiling is simplest and best: https://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/pdf/drinking/Backcountry_Water_Treatment.pdf

Do you rely on mains water; therefore relying on someone else for your life-source? Do you rely on an electric pump to pump water up from your well in the back garden; therefore relying on electricity for your life-source? What happens if the mains fails, the electricity fails, or contamination happens?

Neither of these above options are good. Ideally you have your own gravity fed well; which is simply a big and dependable hole in the ground, water running in a pipe downhill from it and into your house and a big tank.

We have two gravity fed wells, a primary well and a backup well. Our water from the kitchen sink and our water from the roof gutters is collected and used for the vegetable garden and fruit trees; especially useful in heatwaves and big freezes. Our ducks have access to a swampy bog cutting out some of their water quota. However for a lot of people this is not possible, especially if you live in a town or estate.

So what can you do if the above paragraph is not possible for you?

1. Once things are back to normal look into getting off-grid and self-sufficient with all your water needs.

2. Right now find a river/stream/bog that can give you a dependable water supply - should you need it. It should be within walking distance ideally, cutting out dependence on a vehicle. Worst case you should be able to cycle to it with improvised water panniers on your bike.

Practice using it for a week, or one day each week.

Get your water from as high an altitude as possible. It should be clean and fast flowing (unless in a bog). Above a factory/farm/main road/housing estate, not below. Check for pollutants, mouse/rat evidence, dead animals.

SIVING is not essential and in fact just leaving water to sit in a bucket/jug for a couple of hours will allow most sediment to settle or be scooped out.

STERILIZING is essential, no matter how clean you feel the water is. Cleaning wounds, washing dishes, brushing teeth all happens with sterilized water.

Think about a long-term water plan
Find a self-sufficient water point, as close as possible
Practice self-sufficient water, with everything that entails
Organise the various water containers you would need

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