A Human’s Guide to Surviving an Alien Invasion: #8 Using Basic Items to Collect Clean Drinking Water

When faced with the threat of alien invasion, whether in the form of little green men or acidic bacteria, it is the duty and responsibility of every man and woman to do their bit to keep the Human race alive. Your species depends on you! This set of guidelines has been collated by the British Government to help you survive should you find yourself stranded, without power, and staring into the face of danger. Any polite and sporting alien should provide ample opportunity for you to read the correct section in line with the Intergalactic Fair Invasion Treaty (2012), before attacking you. Good luck.

Using Basic Items to Collect Clean Drinking Water

The human body is more than 60% water and, even though we can live for weeks without food, most humans are unable to survive for more than a few days without drinking water. The nutrients in our system dissolve in water, so that they can be transported to all our vital organs. In addition, water protects and cushions our joints, lubricates our eyes and regulates our body temperature.

After several hours without water our body starts to show the first signs of dehydration, which are a dry mouth and dark urine with a strong odour. These are signs that the body has begun to conserve water. After a day or two without fluids we begin having muscle spasms, experience severe nausea and cannot swallow. Symptoms continue to escalate until the blood stops flowing to the skin, and our bodies can no longer regulate our temperature. After three to five days without water, our organs stop functioning, eventually leading to death.

It is, therefore, essential to learn how to collect clean drinking water, to ensure survival in any situation. Some of the most effective ways of doing this are:

  1. Setting a plain steel or aluminium container in which the water can be collected and purified. The containers can be put out when it is raining, and a source of starting a fire should always be kept on hand, to boil the water after as this is the best way to purify it.
  2. Having a plastic or rubber hose available is also essential to help draw water from otherwise inaccessible sources.
  3. Keeping large plastic bags as they can be helpful for collecting condensation when tied over leafy branches. The water from the leaves evaporates and condenses in the bag. A large plastic bag can also be used to make a solar sill, by digging an inner and outer shaped oval trench, on an incline. A tall stick should be placed in the centre, and the inner trench filled with leaves and other plant material. Cover the stick and the trenches with the bag, using rocks on the outside to keep it in place. Water will then condense in the plastic and pool in the outer trench.
  4. Using a clean towel and small bowl to collect dew from the grass, early in the morning. Drag the towel over the area that is covered in dew, and then wring it out over the bowl to collect the water.
  5. Tarpaulin or waterproof vinyl sheets can also be used to collect drinking water. The sheet can be placed on the ground with rocks at the corners and in the middle holding it down, during the rain.

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