EMERGENCY INFORMATION


What Every Family Needs to Know to Stay in the Flow. If disaster strikes, will you be Water-Ready?

Carpinteria Valley Water District Presents: "Water Lines are Lifelines"
Guidelines for Storing and Treating Your Emergency Water Supply

Water is essential to life, and in our modern society, availability of water is taken for granted. But in disasters, the water flow we all count on may not be there.

The Carpinteria Valley Water District, and other agencies responsible for emergency
planning and preparedness, urge you to be waterwise in disasters. This means taking
steps now to store water for you and your family so you can survive several days if the public water supply is disrupted by a natural catastrophe.

How much water do I need to store?
Store 1-2 gallons of safe water per person per day.

Store enough water to last each person at least three (3) days. More is better. (Consider pets and the possibility that you might have visitors present when disaster strikes.)

Store 1-2 gallons of purchased distilled water for any individuals with chronic health problems including weakened immune systems.

Why do we need to store water for use in disasters?
In the event of a major earthquake or other disaster, CVWD water lines could be shut down for several days.

Your family’s ability to survive depends on an adequate supply of “safe” water for drinking and food preparation. Water is “safe” only if it is tap water that has been properly stored, or if it is store bought bottled water that has been properly stored.

How long can water be stored?
Replace your stored water every six months. You can do it when you reset your clocks to and from daylight savings time. Label your stored water containers with the date it was stored.

Specially sealed, airtight pouches of water may be stored up to five years (check the label).
These may be purchased where earthquake supplies are sold.

How and where should I store my emergency water supply?
Store tap water in airtight, clean, food-grade plastic containers. (Do not store in glass or used
milk containers.) Place all containers (tap water, bottled water or pouches) in a cool, dark,
easy-to-reach location, secure from animals. (Examples: in the back of closets, under beds and tables, behind a sofa) Avoid storing the water in garages or attics where it can get too hot.

Should I treat my stored water before using it?
Water properly stored is safe to drink. Only treat your stored water if:
Labels show the water has been stored longer than six months
The water has an unusual odor
The container is leaking
The seal does not appear to be airtight
You have any concerns about the water’s safety


If my stored water needs to be treated before using it in a disaster, how do I do it?
Be prepared to use either of two methods to make your stored water safe. Include in your emergency / disaster supplies a heat source such as a camping stove (do NOT use barbecues), a clean pot, measuring spoons or a clean medicine dropper, and a sealed bottle of regular, unscented liquid bleach. Bleach should also be replaced every six months.

Treatment Option #1: Boil your stored water for at least one minute, let cool, then drink or use to prepare food. Boiling is the preferred treatment method.

Treatment Option #2: Add a measured 1/4 teaspoon, or 16, drops, of bleach to each gallon of water. Shake or stir, then let stand 30 minutes. A slight chlorine taste and smell is normal.

Are there other sources of water I can use in an emergency?
Yes, for some purposes. Water from the water heater, toilet tank, pool or hot tub can be used with soap for washing down surfaces, cleaning tools, and washing your body. Your stored water is meant to keep you alive; use it only for drinking and food preparation. If you run out of stored drinking water, you can use the water from your water heater for drinking after you strain it and treat it. To strain it, pour it through a clean cloth or layers of paper towels. Then treat this water following the directions given in the previous answer.

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