Sri Lanka and the Tsunami

I'm sure we all could not believe the disasters from the Tsunami. I know our prayers go out to those that have endured this disaster--and are still enduring.

In the past, this community has been very helpful in times of need. We have a dealer in Sri Lanka. He came to the US and I spent a day with him training. I have been communicating via e-mail with him since the Tsunami. He and his family are safe, but he says the disaster is really quite beyond belief. I asked him if there is anything I could do to help. He asked for water purification tablets. They need the type the kills both viral and micro-organisms. I have purchased all that is available here, and it wasn't very much. I'm asking help, if anyone can send us more of these tablets, Rives Audio will express ship all of them to our contact in Sri Lanka.

If you care to help, please send tablets to:
Rives Audio
PO Box 5548
Coralville, IA 52241

My plan is to ship at the end of next week, so if you can help, please do so quickly. I don't really want a bunch of tablets after we've shipped.
Rives, a company that manufactures such tablets in my home town has taken up the cause.

This link could help multiply your efforts.
I applaud your effort and will be happy to offer a donation if that will help. Please let me know.

While just slightly off topic, I came across this article on purifying water on the BBC news site awhile back, and was struck by its simplicity and practicality. Perhaps you can pass the information along.

In northern Brazil, residents in the town of Oroba are using an altogether different method in order to purify water and prevent disease.

The town's inhabitants have taken to a surprisingly simple process called Sodis (Solar Water Disinfection Process).

There are several stages to Sodis. Firstly, a clean, two-litre bottle needs to be filled up to three-quarters of its volume with water.

The bottle is shaken for 20 seconds to oxygenate the water. Then, the rest of the bottle is filled and the top screwed on.

It is then placed on a rooftop in direct sunlight for six hours. The ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the Sun's rays eliminates virtually all disease-causing bacteria, viruses and micro-organisms.

"This method is very efficient if you follow the simple procedures," says Professor Jose Euclides Paternini of the Unicamp University, Sao Paolo.

"The Sodis method can be used in many countries, but especially those close to the equator with high solar radiation, and where the population has no access to conventional water treatment."

Luiz Barbosa has been a community health worker for 10 years, looking after 118 families in Oroba. He has observed the difference Sodis has made to the health of his community.

"The water treatment we are using here in this municipality is Sodis - that is purification through the Sun's rays - and it is working well because the children are healthy, smiling and they're enjoying a healthier life," he explains.

Original article can be found here
Loonytunz: Good info. I've contacted them by e-mail and suggested a program. I think together we can multiply our efforts, but it may take time. In the short term I would still like to do what we can do.

So, just go to a local camping store and buy water purification tablets that are labelled "kills viruses" or viral which is their main problem right now. Mail these to us, and we will ship end of the week. If there is an update from the contact Loonytunz gave us I will check.

Rel: I haven't had time to look into the whole article. I have been told (and this could be wrong) that to kill viruses in water requires chemical treatment. Micro-organisms can be killed in other ways and the UV probably does that. I just don't know if it deals with viruses, which is their main issue right now as I understand it.
I have also contacted Wisconsin Pharmacal in an attempt to discern whether I can purchase the tablets directly. If so, I will be in a position to 'drop in' and pick up bulk tablets that are ship-ready and then forward them to Rives.

I'll expound on this once I get some answers...


The article specifically says:

The ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the Sun's rays eliminates virtually all disease-causing bacteria, viruses and micro-organisms.

I cannot personally vouch for the efficacy of the process they describe, but UV irradiation is a proven disinfection technique, and is definitely effective against viruses. In this case it has the additional advantage of being readily available--and free.

If I get a chance to delve into this further I'll let you know. What struck me about the BBC piece was that the technique is simple, cheap, effective and has been extensively tested in the field.

Hope this helps.
Rel: Thank you. I've sent that information on to those in Sri Lanka. I'm sure the water purification companies don't want anyone to find out about that:)
Loonytunz: Thanks again. I have not heard anything from them since contacting them.
Well, try as I might, I have not been able to capture the attention of anyone at WP via email or phone. They are obviously not interested in dealing with the public directly.

Back to the drawing board...
I've just returned from CES. I want to thank all of you that have thus far sent in water purification tablets and other means for purifying water. I am shipping all out on Friday, so if anyone else is shipping to us please do so quickly.

I will have to say, there were a few individuals that were very generous to this cause, well beyond what I would have expected. I won't embarass anyone by listing names--but again a thank you. My shipping bill will be greater because of your generousity--and worth every cent.