The lack of sanitation facilities following major disaster can quickly create secondary problems unless basic guidelines are followed.

If the water lines are known or suspected to be damaged, do not flush the toilet.  Avoid digging latrines in the ground, as untreated raw sewage can pollute fresh ground water supplies.  It also attracts flies and promotes the spread of disease.

Even if the toilet is NOT flushable, it can still be used.  This is less stressful for most people than using some other container.  Remove all the bowl water.  Line it with a heavy-duty plastic bag.  When finished, add a small amount of deodorant or disinfectant, securely tie the bag, and dispose of it in a large trash can with a tight fitting lid.  This large trash can should also be lined with a sturdy trash bag. Eventually, the city will provide a means to dispose of these bags.

Portable camp toilets, small trash cans or sturdy buckets lined with heavy-duty plastic bags can also be used.  Those with tight fitting lids are best.

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