Simple & Easy – Emergency Preparedness
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LDS Preparedness Exercise – Storage for Water

LDS - Emergency Preparedness

Thank you for coming, I appreciate you being here. I wanted to start off with a couple of things – almost every time I tell somebody that I’m in charge of emergency preparedness, the question that I get most is: I have a question for you: How much chlorine do I put in my water when I go to store my water? The simple answer is: None. And I’ll explain a little more as we go on.

The other question I usually get asked: How much water do I store? Well, we’re gonna cover that as well. As you notice, I don’t have huge big handouts to hand out to you .I decided a little while ago that often times when we go to these kind of events, you get handouts, you got great ideas, you stick them in a folder somewhere and you stick them away. 3-4 months later, you go through this stuff and you go like “Oh, this is nice” and you put it somewhere else and they just don’t get found out. All the information that I’m gonna give you tonight is available on my website So if you go to there’s all kinds of videos and .pdf files and word files on all the things I’m gonna talk tonight.

Tonight’s topic will be on water storage and that will also be there too. I’ll also provide the outline that I’m using for tonight’s talk. So that you can go in, print it out if you think it’s important, don’t if you don’t think it’s important. So you can use your paper, I will use mine. The question of how much water to store? We’ll cover that: that is as individual as each one of us is.

Where can I get water if water is not available coming through our pipes? Where can I find extra sources of water? We live in California, we don’t have streams – I know it’s raining right now, we have streams everywhere, but we don’t have streams or rivers where we can go and get water from. We don’t have a well out in uncle Fred’s backyard and those kinds of things. If you do have a well in your backyard – don’t tell me, I don’t want to know.

The biggest question is: if I do get water, how do I purify it? Well, the question is: how much water do I store? That’s individual. Basically, when you come to the lifeguards, when you put people on a rescue life raft – they want to supply a rescue life raft with enough food and water to supply the people on board that life raft sustenance for 3-5 days. So the coastguard figured out how much water to store. I’m sad to tell you that that’s one day’s rations. About 12 ounces of water for one person. That’s enough water for one person, for one day. About 12 ounces. That’s not going to satisfy much of your thirst. If you are working or doing anything other than just sitting there, that’s certainly not gonna satisfy your thirst. It will keep you alive, but it’s not gonna satisfy your thirst.

So how much water should you store? I guess the bigger question is, how much water can you use? The average water in the US uses approximately 3000 gallons of water per month. That’s a lot of water. That includes watering lawns and doing dishes and those kinds of things – well let’s try to narrow it down. The FTA says that we’re supposed to drink about a gallon of water a day. Well, very few people actually drink the whole gallon of water a day. So let’s cut that down to about half a gallon of water is what you would need. Is that all you’re gonna need water for? Certainly not. If you have rice or wheat or anything that’s stored and freeze dried foods – you’re going to have to rehydrate them before you eat. So you’re gonna need water for that.

So, according to the government and almost anybody who makes any recommendations is – the minimum amount of water you should store is 1 gallon, per person, per day. Now, the next question is – how many days? That’s a good question. The average is that we should store 72 hours of water. Have enough water for 3 days. If you remember things like Katrina and those kind of things: did those people need more than 3 days? They certainly did. In Northridge there were residences that haven’t got their water turned back on for 10 days. So, the FEMA and other government agencies are now recommending that you have at least 5 days of water stored. So that is 1 gallon, per person, per day for 5 days. You should have, for every person that lives in your home, you should have 5 gallons of water stored.

Now, is that enough? Maybe not. How many of you actually go to the bathroom every day? I know it’s kind of a testy subject – all of us do. If you have a standard flow toilet in your house, each flush uses 2 and half gallons. The average person goes 3 times every day – so do the math, that’s 7.5 gallons. That’s just for washing, drinking, basic cooking and going to the bathroom – that’s 7 gallons per person, per day. Well, what if you have to cook, you’re gonna have to clean up the dishes that you cook with? How much does that take? Well, the average dishwasher uses 909.5 gallons of water per cycle. If the power’s out, you’re not gonna be using the dishwasher cause the water’s out, you’re gonna have to hand wash them. And this is something I know about because I do it when I go camping – you’re gonna need 5 gallons of water for a set of dishes.

Let’s say you do that once a day and you divide that between a family of four. So, another gallon, a gallon and a half per person. So you can see quickly we’re talking about 7-8 maybe even 10 gallons of water, per person, per day. We didn’t even get to the shower yet. the average shower in a household uses 3 gallons of water per minute. But you’re not gonna use that much cause it’s an emergency. So you can see quickly that we’re talking about 10-15 gallons of water per person, per day. That’s a lot of water – how do you store that much water?


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