This is a guest post and entry in our non-fiction writing contest by Mar
We have been studying the issue of water for several years.
Living in Texas we not only have to concern ourselves with what would happen during a SHTF event, but, also during a severe drought.
I think all of us here have that gut feeling that one day a water well will be more valuable that an oil well. We just went through the worst five year drought in written history and many believe, because of the spring rains, that we are now in the clear.
Most of the lakes in North Texas have recovered nicely but most of them are generally shallower in nature and more quickly subject to reoccurring droughts. Many of the lakes in West, Central and South Texas are still in horrible condition and a handful like (EV Spencer, OH Ivie, Red Bluff, Palo Duro and Champion Creek) are all but empty.
Some major deep reservoirs which hold high capacities of water are in serious trouble…
- Amistad Reservoir 65
- Buchanan, Lake 49
- Abilene, Lake 20
- Medina Lake 22
- Travis, Lake 47
- Corpus Christi Lake 32
- Choke Canyon Reserv 59
- Coleman, Lake 39
- Falcon Reservoir 46
Current % of full pool capacity.
Medina Lake is only at 22% capacity and will probably get completely drained off this year due to down stream irrigation (the primary reason the lake was built to begin with). It was the biggest irrigation project west of the Mississippi 100 years ago. Basically we already have a water crisis in the making even before the SHTF.
We’ve been in a ‘prepared’ position for awhile but always felt we were lacking greatly in the safe drinking water storage area. We had accumulated an assortment of more than 30, 5 gallon plastic water bottles (now returned to the bottled water company for credits) and 100+ one gl. glass bottles. (need to start making wine with these). We have a water bed with 250 gl. of water for other non potable uses.
We also have several 55 gl. barrels set up for rain water collection. BTW, cut in half these also make great potato growing buckets.
We had been to TSC and purchased the 250 gl. tank that was form fitted for the back of my truck for the purpose of retrieving additional water in the future should the need arise. We determined that wasn’t what we really needed so we took it back.
We, of course, also purchased (and kept) the 12 volt and hand (back up) water pumps necessary for competing the fill lifts.
Still we knew we were coming up short on planning for maintaining the needs of our 7 family members.
After searching extensively for a long time we happened to run across a product from a company called Surewater Tanks out of Utah.
They make a 260 upright safe drinking water storage tank with a small foot print, that seemed to satisfy all of our concerns. It‘s oval shaped so it fits through any standard door. We’re resolving theft, contamination and heat breakdown (algae) issues by keeping our water inside.
Unsafe water kills 6,000 people every single day. It is estimated that 80% of illnesses in developing countries are linked to poor water and sanitation practices.
The tank has two faucets for easy filling and water rotation. It’s made of original materials and not recycled plastics thus addressing our health concerns regarding storing water in plastic vessels. We got three of them so I can always put one of them in my truck and retrieve outside water when and if needed. I can fit two tanks in the truck lying down but can only carry the weight of one @ 2100 lbs.
Outside Water Sources:
Having planned well enough to see us through, at least, the first 3+ months of any crisis the need may arise to have to go out and retrieve additional water.
Rain collection water may be highly contaminated. We could use that for flushing down our gravity septic system. Q: What are those people on the new electrical pump septic tanks systems going to do with their waste?
Guess if they don’t have any water stored to begin with it won’t make much of difference for very long anyway.
Municipalities may have had time to put something back together by then but will it be safe to drive to those outlets? They would likely be hotspots for ambushers to operate around. Most muni water really isn’t even healthy to drink now but, in a time of need….This would not be our 1st choice.
We have friends within a few miles who are on wells but they are very deep wells and I question if they will be able to pull water if the electrical grid is shot? We aren’t allowed to drill a well where I‘m located unfortunately.
There are rivers and lakes with 7-20 miles but that water would probably be highly contaminated and not worth the efforts of decontamination? We do have our own 55 gl. gravity flow drum set up for the filtration of any outside water. The pebble rock, sand layered activated carbon type that should provide us with some 3000-4000 gallons of clean filtered water as long as we use H20 from the best possible outside sources.
We have all the water test kits and a variety of chems to clean it up if needed.
Fortunately in South Central Texas there are several flowing springs replenished by some of the underground aquifers. (springs like these can be found in many other parts of the US) These springs offer long term sources for fresh uncontaminated sweet water. Some years ago we purchased a highly detailed map showing every spring in Texas and the average flow rate. This map is the single most importation piece of information in my survival library. If we have to bug out, we know where to go to get uncontaminated water. If we need a long term source of water we will always have several options.
Most of the springs are behind high fenced properties and that could pose a bit of an issue. And, well we’re well prepared for that to. We’re hoping we won’t need to go that route but …one never knows.
What we’ve come to fully realize is that NOTHING else matters if you don’t have good clean water, plans for collection and replenishment, and a good means for cleaning or filtering it.
We can only imagine and never fully comprehend in advance what will take place in only a few days once the faucets stop spewing water. Things have been made so convenient and easy for us that we assume it will last forever. We have all taken so much for granted during this holiday vacation we’ve all been enjoying.
“When the well’s dry, we know the worth of water.”—Benjamin Franklin
This is an entry in our non-fiction writing contest where you could win:
First Prize) Winner will receive a Stealth Body Armor Level II vest courtesy of SafeGuard ARMOR™ LLC and a $150 gift certificate for Wolf Ammo courtesy of LuckyGunner.com A total prize value of over $600.
Third Prize) Winner will receive copies of both of my books “31 Days to Survival: A Complete Plan for Emergency Preparedness” and “Dirt-Cheap Survival Retreat: One Man’s Solution” and a Katadyn Siphon Water Filter courtesy of Mayflower Trading Company. A total prize value of $107.
Contest ends on June 5 2012.
- The Prepper's Guide to Surviving the End of the World, as We Know It: Gear, Skills, and Related Know-How
- The Prepared Prepper's Cookbook: Over 170 Pages of Food Storage Tips, and Recipes From Preppers All Over America!
- Dirt-Cheap Survival Retreat: One Man's Solution
- 31 Days to Survival: A Complete Plan for Emergency Preparedness