This has been a weird year weather-wise, and flooding seems to be the rule, rather than the exception. Flooding raises concerns about contaminated water.
Pictures of sandbagging efforts have become common in the papers and on other media outlets. The rivers, creeks and other bodies of water, just do not want to stay within their boundaries. If floodwaters breach a local water filtration plant, there is a high level of risk for contamination of the drinking water.
Many affected towns, cities and other areas across America have had to resort to alternative water supplies to handle their daily living chores. Unfortunately, some of the water is from taps in another location, which really does not mean it is clean. It is just not contaminated with the gunk in the flood waters – yet. Those who have water distillers are ahead of the stress of situations like this, as they can get clean, fresh and safe water on demand, not having to worry about flooding or their local water supplies.
Every day, there are pictures showing huge areas completely flooded out, businesses, homes, trailer parks, municipal buildings and schools submerged in dirty river water while the melt continues to dissipate. It will eventually recede, but the damage left behind will be considerable. Pumping and sandbags will help to a certain extent, but in many situations, pumped water just has no place else to go but back into the flood waters threatening various locales.
Flood water is not just dangerous because it floods homes, municipal filtration plants and wells, etc; it is dangerous because it often contains invisible organisms, viruses, fecal matter and other disgusting things you do not want to come into contact with in any way. The fact is that there are over 2,100 hitchhikers in your regular water that you should not be drinking, never mind the addition of floodwater and its baggage.
Local officials in hundreds of locations are issuing warnings to people to wear protective clothing and try not to get any of the floodwater on themselves. Do not let children play in the water, and keep the water and your hands away from your nose, eyes and mouth.
Be very aware of the risk of getting tetanus. Wash hands frequently and if you do not recall when you last got a tetanus shot, get a booster to protect yourself. As for drinking water, cooking water and water for brushing your teeth, the safest, cleanest water you could consume during flooding conditions is that made by water distillers.