Aerial of Riverfont Park

Water Prep Ahead of a Storm

Making Sure You Have Enough Clean Drinking Water ūüíß ¬∂

How Residents Can Prepare:

Tip #1: Make sure you have enough drinking water 

You can save a lot of money and a trip to the store by filling up clean and sanitary containers with Tampa’s safe, clean, and clear drinking water straight from your tap. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) recommends emptying out and refilling the containers with fresh tap water every six months.  

  • Do not re-use plastic jugs or cardboard containers that have had milk or fruit juice in them due to the possibility of bacterial growth.¬†
  • FEMA recommends storing one gallon per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation, like bathing and brushing your teeth.¬†
  • Fill ice trays and ice maker containers (make sure the ice maker is turned off during the storm).¬†

When storing bottled water for emergency use, make note of the expiration or ‚Äúuse by‚ÄĚ date marked on the bottle and store it away from sun and heat exposure.¬†¬†

Tip #2: Secure your irrigation system 

If you have an automatic sprinkler system, make sure to: 

  • AHEAD OF A STORM¬†
    • Turn your system to ‚ÄúOFF‚ÄĚ until the storm passes. Otherwise, the soil will be too saturated to absorb more water, causing flooding.¬†
  • AFTER THE STORM PASSES¬†
    • Check your irrigation controller and rain sensor to make sure they are still working properly and hasn‚Äôt reset to factory settings which could happen after temporary power loss.¬†
    • If the rain sensor gets damaged by the storm, Tampa Water Department customers can request a free rain sensor to replace their damaged one.¬†

How Businesses Can Prepare:

Critical facilities, such as schools, child day care establishments, assisted living facilities, nursing homes, dialysis centers, hospitals or other health care centers, or food establishments should take extra precautions. 

Create an Emergency Water Supply Planning Guide that includes updated emergency contact information with external partners and agencies, as well as steps to take if a boil water notice is issued.

Need help getting started? Check out these helpful guides and websites: 

Stay Informed With Alert Tampa 

If our water system experiences a loss in power or water pressure due to a hurricane, storm, or unforeseen emergency, we will notify all affected customers on the appropriate actions that need to be taken. 

  • Follow @AlertTampa on Twitter¬†
  • Text TAMPAREADY to 888-777¬†
  • Text¬†TAMPALISTA to 888-777 for alerts in Spanish¬†
  • Sign up for voicemails and e-mails at¬†tampa.gov/AlertTampa
  • Have a plan and make an emergency preparedness kit¬†