ANCHORAGE, Alaska — State emergency managers just took delivery of some pretty sophisticated equipment which the Alaska Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management can deploy during the next disaster.
The highly-portable, suitcase-sized water purifiers can be loaded onto a small aircraft, packed into a vehicle trunk, towed behind a snow machine, or strapped to an ATV.
“You hook up the hoses, put it in the water, push a button and you’ve got water,” said Karl Edwards, emergency management specialist, while demonstrating one of the machines at Campbell Creek in Anchorage.
The units, which cost $13,900 each, were delivered in late February and early March. This is the first spring breakup during which Alaska emergency managers have the option of using their own portable purifiers.
“Weather permitting we can be out within the next day,” said Edwards.
Often, when a river floods a town during spring river breakup, municipal water becomes unsafe to drink and residents must rely on boiled or bottled water.