Tag Archives: Sanitation

  • When You Gotta Go: Sanitation in the Great Outdoors

    When You Gotta Go: Sanitation in the Great Outdoors

    “Does a person poop in the woods? Not if they don't have to.”

    So begins a particularly classy Gizmodo article I came across the other day, delicately titled, “How to Poop in the Woods.” For me (and on this point my mountain-man husband and I disagree), Port-a-Potties at a campsite are a deal breaker, and au naturel is not an option. However, I acknowledge (oh-so-reluctantly) the possibility of an emergency scenario that requires me to get comfy with the idea of going in the woods. Which is why I actually read this through to the end.

    Whether you’re an avid outdoorsy type or a diligent prepper, one of the situations that most urgently requires some forethought is bathroom sanitation. Gizmodo’s article—while just slightly on the grody side—gives some great guidelines for attending to the environment while attending to your business. It also offers some downright brainy ideas for how to dispose of waste when the best options (bury it, pack it out) are not available.

    P.S. The comments on Gizmodo’s article have a bit of potty language, but are a treasure trove of useful tips, like how to identify poison oak when looking for a good leaf to wipe with.

    For those like me, for whom even typing the word “poop” is squirm-inducing, there are (thankfully!) plenty of products out there to make all this a little less icky. Browse these search results for some of our favorite emergency sanitation products.

    It’s also a good idea toread up on other good hygiene practices for emergency situations. These Insight articles will get you started:

    Do you have a favorite tip or tool for the call of nature while in the great outdoors?



    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: Sanitation

  • Emergency Showers: 3 Great Set Ups

    Emergency Showers--3 Great Set Ups that work

     Have you ever thought about your … ahem … personal hygiene during an emergency?

    In your quest to secure enough food and water for an emergency don’t forget to purchase supplies to keep yourself clean. Taking a shower during an emergency provides you with physical and mental health benefits that can help you survive.

    Poor hygiene and sanitation can spread disease, especially in a natural disaster. According to a John Hopkins Red Cross study, in some cases, more people die from unsanitary conditions rather than the natural disaster itself. Showering may seem like a luxury or the last thing on your mind in an emergency, but it shouldn’t be overlooked because it could save your life.

    Here are three great emergency shower set ups you can use to help you stay clean, healthy, and sane in an emergency or while camping and spending the day outdoors.


    Set up One: The Emergency Shower

    Since showering is an everyday task, doing it in an emergency can offer you comfort and give you a sense of control and normalcy. An emergency shower works and looks similar to the shower in your home. This familiarity can go a long way in an emergency where your world seems like it’s turned upside down.

    Emergency showers are portable and use various methods for heating your water. It just depends on which type of heating mechanism you want.

    Solar Spray Portable Shower- Absorbs direct sunlight to heat your shower water to nearly 100°F within 2.5 hours. This shower holds 5 gallons, which is enough for up to three showers. It includes an on/off valve. Switch the on/off valve to allow water to spray through the hose then spray yourself down. The hose can be placed on the shower pole tripod stand so you can stand under it just like the shower at your home.

     Which emergency shower is right for you?

    Zodi Extreme Portable Hot Shower- Uses a 10,000 BTU (British Thermal Unit) output stove to heat your water in a stainless steel container. This shower can heat your water to 100°F in just 5 minutes. It includes a water temperature indicator, showerhead, and on/off controls. It also has a 6 foot shower hose. Set the tank on the ground to shower and spray yourself with the hose, or drape the hose over a branch or shower pole tripod stand.

    Which Emergency Shower is right for you?

    Basecamp Aqua Cube Portable Hot Shower-This shower uses a battery powered water pump and a propane powered burner to heat your water. It acts as a shower and tap that can heat water to 100°F or more.  The Basecamp works much like a tank less water heater and includes a long shower hose (over 8 feet) and a 5-foot pump hose. Place the Basecamp on the ground and drape the hose over a branch or shower pole tripod stand.

    Which Emergency Shower is Right for you?

    You can fill up your emergency shower in a lake or river if the water has not been contaminated. These shower systems should not be used for storing, treating, or heating drinking or cooking water.

    You can do these three things to ensure your water is clean: 

    1. Use your water storage to fill your shower (this means you’ll have to take into account how much extra water you’ll need for bathing as well as for drinking, and cooking).
    2. Filter and treat water using your portable filter and chemical purifying treatments.
    3. Boil the water first and then fill the shower with it.

    Word to the Wise:  Make sure you wash (yourself and your dishes, etc.) at least 200 feet from any water source so that your soap doesn’t contaminate the water source itself.

    Set up Two: ReadyBath Wipes

    But what if you don’t have an emergency shower? Or can’t stand in a shower because of an injury or fatigue? Good hygiene is still important so you can avoid contracting infections, viruses, or other diseases. This is a time when a ReadyBath Wipe can help you to get clean easily and quickly.

    They come in a pack of 8 damp cloths, enriched with moisturizers and antibacterial soaps that are mild enough to cleanse the skin without irritating it. This is a great item to include in your emergency kit to keep yourself clean while on the go or in case of an injury.

    Which Emergency Shower is Right for you?

    Set up Three: Use cooking water or natural water sources

    Let’s say you don’t want to tap into your water storage supplies for bathing or you don’t have ReadyBath Wipes. If you want conserve your water storage for drinking and cooking, here are a couple tricks:

    1. Take a sponge bath using the warm water left over from the boiled water you used to make a meal. This conserves and repurposes your water storage (please don’t cook with that water again after you’re done bathing…dump it out!)
    2. Wash in a river or stream using camp soap or another biodegradable soap that is phosphate-free. Don’t use a lot of this soap because it can still contaminate fresh water sources. Make sure to wear shoes while washing in streams or rivers. Wearing shoes prevents parasitic infections and cuts that could become infected.
    3. Use a little bit of camp soap to wash in the rain.


    Check out these sanitation supplies to make showering/bathing outdoors easier and more private.

    -           Aqua Towels

    -           Disaster Hygiene Kit

    -          Shower Pole with Tripod Stand

    -          Deluxe Portable Privacy Shelter

    For more saitation options like toilets, toothbrushes, and much more, check out our sanitation product page.



    “Sanitation and hygiene During an Emergency” http://beprepared.com/blog/5920/sanitation-and-hygiene-during-an-emergency-2/





    Posted In: Equipment, Insight, Uncategorized Tagged With: Emergency Gear, Sanitation

  • Prepper Style New Year's Resolutions: Indoor Gear

    Each Monday in January, we’re sharing our Preparedness New Year’s Resolutions for 2014. If you’d like to make some Prepping Resolutions of your own, but don’t know where to start, borrow some of our resolutions or use this series to get some ideas.

    This week we are talking about Indoor Gear. Click here to check out Last week’s resolutions for Preparedness Skills.

    Prepper Style New Year's Resolutions: Indoor Gear

    Here is what our Emergency Essentials’ bloggers plan on purchasing as Indoor Gear items for 2014:

    New Year’s Resolution Prepper Style: Indoor Gear


    I resolve to get a Kitchen Plus 2000 Hand-Powered Food Processor. Based on its great customer reviews, I’m quite sure I’d use it often—not just on the rare occasion when our power goes out!


    I love the indoors. I really do. Even though I’m committed to learning more skills and spending time in the outdoors this year, climate-controlled spaces with running water and plumbing are really more my cup of tea. However, just because I love the indoors doesn’t mean the plumbing, A/C, furnace, or electricity will always be working—especially following a natural disaster.

    This year I’m buying some gear that will make hunkering down at home easier if some of the utilities or other comforts of home aren’t available… things like, ahem, a Tote-able Toilet, Double Doodie Bags, and packets of enzymes (it’s just reality). Because I’m a wimp when it comes to being cold, a Mr. Heater is in my future, in case the gas and/or power goes out in the winter. I also really love to cook, so I’ve got my eye on a Kitchen Plus 2000 for food processing without electricity and, if I can swing it, a Bosch. Because…who doesn’t want a Bosch? It’s the Rolls Royce of food processing, if you have power.


    A couple of summers ago, I went to church with my mom and the speakers talked about the importance of communication in an emergency. One of the speakers learned how to use a HAM radio and was part of the local HAM radio network. He gave a brief overview of how the HAM system works.

    For my New Year’s resolution for indoor gear, I’d like to study up on HAM radios and I’d also like to research and buy different phone apps and radios like the Kaito Voyager that can get access to NOAA and other weather/warning update systems that will help me to stay in communication and know what’s going on during an emergency if I have to shelter in place.



    This year, my husband and I will be condensing all of our “stuff”, especially in the kitchen. In 2014, I plan to purchase a Bosch Universal Plus Mixer with Blender Attachment and Cookie Paddles  with the Metal Whip Driver. This will help us prepare for when we move into a smaller apartment when my husband goes to grad school. Bosch Mixers do practically everything. Not only can you make bread, cake, and cookies, but, with the blender attachment, you can cream smoothies, malts (my specialty!), sauces, meringues, whipped toppings, and more. With the one mixer that does it all, I can get rid of my bulky stand mixer, toss out my low-power blender, and eventually, as I add on more attachments, get rid of the other bulky items that take up space in my kitchen.


    What types of indoor gear items do you want with you if you have to shelter in place? Let us know in the comments. 

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: food stroage, emergency cooking, emergency preparedness, Sanitation, communication

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