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Food, Water, and Sanitation

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A major earthquake may cause damage to your underground water system, this will leave you with no running water. Power and transportation will also be affected and could cause food shortages, with gas/electric utilities being interrupted, cooking will become a challenge. You need to prepare for enough water, non-cook food, or an alternative cooking method.

Don’t plan on boiling water to make it safe to drink, this will use too much fuel that should be reserved for cooking. Store safe water long term in advance or if you have a source of water. i.e swimming pool, be sure to purchase a way to filter unsafe water with our Water Bottle Filter.


Canned fruits and vegetables that are packed in water on their own are good choices. Avoid the heavy syrup that creates an unnatural thirst.

Consider alternative methods. A camping stove is probably the easiest way to go without making things complicated. TIP: If you lose power, plan to eat first the food from the refrigerator, then the freezer, then the pantry.

We’ve put together a variety of grocery list items for your choices of 2-week emergency food supply in our Family Preparedness Calculator. Click here to download your free report.

How much water is enough to prepare for my family?

For families, I personally recommend having a 55-gallon water barrel per household. This is the most economical way to store water for the long term.

In addition to drinking, you will need water for personal needs, like hygiene, washing, first aid, cooking. Because of the demands for water, I don’t believe that the usual 3-day water supply (72 hour) is close to being enough for your family. We are suggesting to store at least one gallon per person per day for at least 2 weeks.

Our Water Barrel Package contains a 55-gallon Water Barrel, Water Preserver, Hand Pump, and Bung Wrench.

For schools, which is better Water Pouches or Water Barrels?

For schools, I recommend water pouches for your emergency response teams because it’s very compact and can be carried in their kits.

However, for the entire school water storage I don’t suggest water pouches as your primary drinking water supply. I recommend Water Barrels. Not only it’s cheaper, but it’s also more economical over the long term. Since water can only be stored for a maximum of 5 years, with the Water Pouches, you will have to dispose all of the pouches and purchase replacements. But with Water barrels, you only need to dispose the older water and refill the barrel with fresh water and new water preserver.

Each person needs at least 4 oz. of water every hour while they are awake for 3 days. Use our free calculator and enter your school population to get the exact quantity you need for your school.