During an emergency, food and water can become contaminated. The following tips will help you reduce the risk of contamination.
- Do not eat any food that may have come into contact with contaminated water.
- Do not mix powdered baby formula with water that may be contaminated.
- Keep refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible. Refrigerators will keep foods cool for approximately 4 hours if unopened. A full freezer will hold its’ temperature for about 48 hours if unopened. Do not eat foods that have been in refrigerator or freezer longer than the times stated above.
- Do not eat any food that has an unusual smell, color or texture. Never taste food to determine if it is safe. “When in doubt, throw it out.”
- Cook or reheat food to an internal temperature of 165º. Cook meat to an internal temperature of 170º.
- Do not use bottled water unless you are sure that it came from a safe, commercial source.
- Do not use contaminated water for any reason.
- Boiling water is the preferred method to kill harmful bacteria and parasites. Most disease micro-organisms in water will be killed by vigorous boiling for one minute.
- Water can be treated with unscented household chlorine bleach, however, this method is only effective for killing bacteria. To use chlorine bleach, follow these instructions:
- If water is clear, add 1/8 teaspoon of bleach to 1 gallon of water
- If the water is cloudy, add 1/4 teaspoon of bleach to 1 gallon of water
- Mix the bleach and water thoroughly and let stand for about 30 minutes before use. If the water does not smell slightly of bleach, DO NOT use it.