Why Filling Your Bathtub with Water Before a Hurricane or Storm is Essential

    fill bathtub with water hurricane

    Getting ready for natural disasters like hurricanes and storms is about more than just stocking up on emergency items. It means knowing the risks, thinking about what problems could happen, and doing things in advance to reduce their impact. Research from Cambridge University Press shows that being prepared also involves creating a culture of readiness in our communities and groups. This can cut down on the risks people and organizations face when disasters strike.

    When there’s a warning about an upcoming storm or hurricane, people in the danger zone need to prepare for different scenarios. This might mean dealing with power outages, unsafe drinking water, and not being able to get to important services. To get ready, people should gather essential supplies, plan for emergencies, and ensure they can stay in touch with others. An often overlooked but crucial step is filling your bathtub with water.

    Why Fill Your Bathtub with Water During a Hurricane?

    Filling up your bathtub with water before a hurricane hits is a smart move to get ready for emergencies. Hurricanes can mess up the systems that bring water to your house, causing problems like dirty water or no water at all, especially if the power goes out.

    When this happens, having a bathtub full of water changes from just being a good idea to something you need. It acts as a backup supply of water you can’t drink but is still very important for different uses during an emergency.

    1. Flushing Toilets: In the absence of a regular water supply, the water from your bathtub allows you to manually flush toilets, helping to maintain hygiene and sanitation.
    2. Washing Hands and Personal Hygiene: Keeping up with personal hygiene is vital for disease prevention during a disaster. The stored water can be utilized for handwashing and other basic hygiene routines.
    3. Cleaning and Sanitizing Surfaces: Post-storm, when cleaning supplies might be scarce, bathtub water can be used to clean and sanitize surfaces, reducing the risk of illness.
    4. Watering Pets: Ensuring pets have enough water during emergencies is essential. The water stored in your bathtub can keep them hydrated.
    5. Boiling for Drinking: If you run out of drinking water and it’s safe to use your stove, you can boil water from the bathtub to kill pathogens, making it safe to drink.
    6. Gardening: If the situation extends and you have a garden or plants that need tending, this water can be used for irrigation, helping sustain any homegrown food resources.
    7. Emergency Cooling: During power outages, especially in hot climates, water can be used for sponge baths to keep cool if air conditioning or fans are not working.

    Taking the step to fill your bathtub with water before a hurricane can make a big difference in being prepared. It helps make sure you have water available when your regular water supply might not work properly.

    Securing Additional Water Sources as Emergency Water Supply

    Starting with filling your bathtub is good, but getting more water sources ready before a hurricane comes can improve your preparedness. It’s like making sure you have a backup for your backup, so you’re all set even if one water source has problems. Here are some other ways to make sure you have plenty of water available:

    1. Stock Up on Bottled Water: One of the easiest steps is to buy bottled water and store it properly. The CDC suggests keeping at least a three-day supply, with each person needing about one gallon per day for both drinking and sanitation purposes.
    2. Use Clean Containers for Tap Water: Grab any clean, food-safe containers with secure lids—think jugs, bottles, or large cooking pots. Fill them up with tap water, mark them with the date, and store them in a cool, dark place. This way, you have a ready stash of water that doesn’t cost you extra.
    3. Consider a Water Storage Bladder: A product like the WaterBOB, which is a big plastic bag that fits in your bathtub and can hold up to 100 gallons, keeps stored water clean and drinkable. It’s an excellent option for ensuring a safe drinking water supply.
    4. Collect Rainwater: If it’s practical and safe, setting up a system to catch and store rainwater can give you an added water source. Just remember, if you plan to drink this water or use it for cooking, it needs to be treated to ensure it’s safe.
    5. Portable Water Purifiers and Tablets: Having a way to purify natural water sources, such as streams or lakes, is invaluable. Portable water filters or purification tablets can turn these sources into safe drinking water, making them must-have items in your emergency kit.

    Building a Resilient Future Through Preparedness

    As we finish talking about how to get ready for disasters, it’s clear that being prepared is more than just keeping ourselves safe—it’s about looking out for our families and helping our community too. Doing things ahead of time, like making sure we have enough water and a solid plan, protects the people we care about and helps everyone feel less worried when natural disasters happen.

    What shows the strength of being prepared is how it brings people together. When you share what you know and what you have, you help your neighbors be ready too. This teamwork makes everyone stronger and better able to handle whatever comes our way.

    Being prepared isn’t just a one-time thing; it’s about always being ready to change and learn. This attitude means approaching new challenges calmly and confidently. Let’s lead the way in being prepared, creating communities that can stand strong together no matter what.