4. Sea water; distillation and reverse osmosis.
5. Dew: condensation on cool surfaces.
6. Vegetation: coconut, wild pineapple, and cactus.
7. Snow and ice: heat.
With rare exceptions, Navy and Marine Corps activities ashore within the continental limits of the United States are situated where a municipal water supply is available. The municipality is responsible for the delivery of water meeting minimum requirements of the National Interim Primary Drinking Water Regulations, which are enforced by the Environmental Protection Agency or the individual state that has been granted enforcement authority. National Interim Primary Drinking Water Regulations, however, have no requirements to deliver water containing a residual disinfectant; the Navy and Marine Corps will consider installation of a chlorination system for the supplied water (dechlorination) if an unhealthful situation exists. The military installation is responsible for the protection of the water during distribution through the system on its premises.
Unless a variance is obtained from a state with enforcement responsibility of the Environmental Protection Agency, all municipal systems (public water systems) in the United States must meet the quality standards of the Environmental Protection Agency and generally meet the requirements of National Secondary Drinking Water Regulations, which are not federally enforced and deal with the aesthetic qualities relating to the public acceptance of drinking water. All Navy and Marine Corps installations located outside the United States shall maintain the same drinking water standards as prescribed for U.S. installations; requests for deviation from these standards shall be submitted to Naval Medical Command through the area Navy Environmental and Preventive Medicine Unit.
A hospital corpsman attached to a Marine unit or a naval construction battalion (SeaBees) may frequently be called upon to approve field water sources and to recommend disinfection methods before water is considered safe to drink. In a field situation, all water should be considered unsafe until it has been disinfected and tested. Approval of water sources should be based on a thorough surveillance of the situation, including the color, odor, and turbidity of the water; the presence of vegetation of dead animals at the water point; and possible sources of pollution upstream. The hospital corpsman should seek out the best available water for the unit.
When safe water is not available, the following procedures may be used to produce potable water for either individual or group use.
1. Fill the canteen with the clearest, cleanest water available.
2. Check iodine tablets for physical change prior to use, as they lose their effectiveness in time. Iodine tablets that have become completely yellow (canary yellow) or completely brown should be discarded and not used. Those tablets that stick together or crumble should also be discarded.
3. Add 1 iodine tablet to a 1-quart canteen of water (add 2 tablets if the water is cloudy). An additional tablets should be added for each additional quart of water.
4. Replace the canteen cap loosely, wait 5 minutes, then agitate the canteen so that the threads around the neck of the canteen are rinsed.
5. Tighten the cap and wait an additional 20 minutes before using the water.
1. Fill the canteen with the clearest, cleanest water available, leaving an air space of at least 1 inch below the neck of the canteen.
2. Add 1 ampule of calcium hypochloride to a canteen cup half full of water; stir with a clean stick until the powder is dissolved.
3. Fill the canteen cap one-half full of the solution in the cup and add it to the water in the canteen; place the cap on the canteen and thoroughly agitate. (If you are using a 1-quart aluminum canteen, add a minimum of 3 capsful of disinfectant solution to the canteen, as this cap is much smaller than the one on plastic canteens.)
4. Loosen the cap slightly; invert the canteen to allow the treated water to leak onto the threads around the canteen neck.
5. Tighten the cap and wait at least 30 minutes before using the water.