The average household per person uses around 160 litres of water per day, only 4% (6.4 lts) is used for drinking whilst the remaining is used for washing & cleaning with the large proportion for flushing the toilet.
Granted in a disaster, we can ration water and reuse as needed, so final use ‘dirty’ or ‘grey’ water may be used for flushing toilets, watering gardens etc., however the bottom line is that we require water to survive.
So how much is enough?
Human body weight is two-thirds water we use it for circulation, respiration and converting food for energy. Water is lost through perspiring, breathing and when you pee. This lost water has to be replaced otherwise the body becomes dehydrated. This is further compounded in extreme heat and cold; in heat the body will lose large amounts through sweat, in cold air moisture is lost through breath
In a ‘goldilocks’ climate with little to no exertion we can live for about 3 to 5 days without water depending upon personal health.
On average we need around 8 glasses of water 1.5 to 2 litres per day.
The supermarkets hold around 3 days worth of supplies, data has shown that in a disaster, stocks are cleared well within this period with main food and water supplies disappearing in a day. People will fight over the last can of beans so why put yourself in unnecessary danger?
There are basic things that you can do immediately in the event of disaster, such as filling up buckets and containers, baths, sinks and restrict flushing of the toilet unless absolutely necessary.
Preparation now, will give you a head start, one of the most simple is collecting water in outside water-butts, these are a great way of collecting rain water, this can be cycled regularly by using it to water plants, rinse off washed cars, etc. In an emergency this can be filtered or boiled for cooking or drinking. A water-butt can hold around 100 to 200 litres, 3 of these on one property that’s 300 days of minimum drinking water!
I use a simple wine rack in my storage utility room, this holds around 20 2 lt bottles (10 days of minimum water), I cycle this water storage by using it for the dogs water, the whole batch cycles once per week keeping this batch reasonably fresh.
Additionally you can store larger receptacles around the home and property to maximise your water storage.
Frozen water will act a frozen battery bank to keep your goods frozen for longer if the power goes off.
It provides cooling where required, injury, heat, etc.
Finally, once thawed its water! to drink.
In my experience, the PET bottles don’t handle freezing too well so I use the HDPE bottles used for milk, these require a bit more washing but great for freezing.