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#290589 - 09/17/18 10:10 PM Makeshift sanitation
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 7145
Loc: southern Cal
A recently resurrected thread posed this important question - "How many American people really know how to properly wash dishes clean when camping in the field with no hot water, no soap, no sponges"?

First of all, it is very common to have hot water (also good for tea and coffee), soap (in small container) and sponges (also small), so basic sanitation can be followed, basically just as at home.

A few changes do make it easier, and (clean)water is often not abundant. One pot meals rock! Minimize the number of items that must be cleaned...

We have often given each person their own set of plates and utensils for their exclusive use and cleanup. This helps retard the spread of germs.

Sunlight is a great disinfectant for lots of germs. Use it.

Pay particular attention to latrine sanitation. According to studies, improper hand washing after using the loo is a principal source of infection in the back country.

Hand sanitizers are great in this respect, convenient for hand washing. Those that I have used have 62-70% alcohol content and make fine stove fuel/accelerant as well'

i have followed these procedures for groups on field projects for up to two weeks at a time with no problems. just make sure everyone understands the necessity.

In your responses to this thread, please keep it clean....
Geezer in Chief

#290591 - 09/17/18 10:36 PM Re: Makeshift sanitation [Re: hikermor]
gonewiththewind Offline

Registered: 10/14/08
Posts: 1517
It may sound condescending, but the Boy Scout handbook is a good reference for this. If you follow those procedures, you will be fine. There are better technologies, better techniques, but these work. I have never had a scout get sick while camping!

#290596 - 09/18/18 03:58 AM Re: Makeshift sanitation [Re: hikermor]
brandtb Offline

Registered: 11/26/04
Posts: 321
Loc: S.E. Pennsylvania
"Hand sanitizers are great in this respect, convenient for hand washing. Those that I have used have 62-70% alcohol content and make fine stove fuel/accelerant as well'"

According to my hospital hand washing course, they work well and actually keep your hands germ-free longer than soap washing, however they are not as effective against spoors - microorganisms with a protective shell.
Brian Brandt

#290598 - 09/18/18 04:16 AM Re: Makeshift sanitation [Re: hikermor]
LesSnyder Offline

Registered: 07/11/10
Posts: 1582
Loc: New Port Richey, Fla
for 9 days in 2004, I relied on direct grilling of refrigerated meat, and when frozen meat started to thaw with skewers of kabobs so there was no clean up needed... a couple of potato/ground beef patty foil pouches were pre assembled for Irma, as well as a couple of cans of "chunky" soup and stew directly from their cans... heated in a bath of hot water

I have not had to deal with a boil order of city water since the very first storms in the 60's but still prepare for that ... a 1/2 gallon of Clorox is on the shopping list at the beginning of each tropical storm season

#290599 - 09/18/18 02:26 PM Re: Makeshift sanitation [Re: LesSnyder]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 7145
Loc: southern Cal
We were under a boil order for several days following the Thomas fire. Boiling is considered the most positive, fool proof way of sanitizing water, but recommended times vary. I have encountered anything from five minutes at a rolling boil to just bring to a rolling boil and then cool gradually....I understand that five minutes is appropriate if you are sterilizing bandages or cloth for medical use.
Geezer in Chief

#290611 - 09/19/18 03:52 AM Re: Makeshift sanitation [Re: hikermor]
clearwater Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/19/05
Posts: 1142
Loc: Channeled Scablands
On a long Grand Canyon rafting trip, everyone took turns with different cooking and cleaning chores. Except one person. The one who took care of the rocket box. He was a professional guide for other trips and found this best practice for sanitation. He along moved the potty, set it up, lashed it down, etc.

#290623 - 09/19/18 07:40 PM Re: Makeshift sanitation [Re: hikermor]
TeacherRO Offline

Registered: 03/11/05
Posts: 2396
Good ideas: Camping basics 101


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