My name is Scott Heffield and I’m the Lead Instructor and Project Development Manager for the Bear Grylls Survival Academy’s. We actively run 6 day Adult survival courses and 24 hour parent and child courses. Both courses are very dynamic and incorporate participants living out in the wildness under bush craft shelters, eating wild food and drinking water from steams and rivers.
Although these are survival courses, we must still abide by health and safety law and as far as possible, put in place control measures to ensure that all our activities are safe. When it comes to drinking water, this is particularly important. With this in mind, I was very interested in being asked to test the LIFESAVER® jerrycan on our courses. Up until this point, we had been bringing fresh water in to camp by hand which was time consuming and very physically demanding. We had been making use of a stream, which was in close proximity. However, only being able to fill up personal water bottles and then needing to boil the water in order to drink it. Filtering and purifying water is part of the syllabus. However, it is a survival experience we offer and not a survival exercise. We have no time on the courses for continually processing water.
We use a lot of water for cooking, cleaning and of course drinking, particularly now that summer is here and due to the physical nature of the courses. So, it has been incredibly handy to fill the large LIFESAVER® jerrycan, holding 18.5 litres at a time, from the local stream and use it in camp for just about everything. At first it was just used for cooking but this soon developed with participants and instructors using it for drinking water as well. I must say the quality of the water is excellent with no bad or chemical such tastes. This has allowed us to double our water supply to participants and provide everyone with safe clean drinking water. Our next step is to take it to the more extreme adult courses and see how it copes with rancid dirty water.