The International Bottled Water Association (IBWA) is working with its member bottlers to deliver critical supplies of bottled water to victims of Hurricane Sandy.
As with past disasters, IBWA member bottlers began preparing to provide substantial supplies of bottled water as the storm approached. Working in coordination with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA); state, county, and municipal emergency management agencies; and emergency relief partners including the American Red Cross and AmeriCares IBWA’s members are supplying clean and safe drinking water to hurricane victims in New Jersey, New York, and other stricken areas in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast.
“The bottled water industry has always been at the forefront of relief efforts during natural disasters and other catastrophic events,” said IBWA vice president of communications Chris Hogan. “Throughout the years, bottled water companies have immediately responded to the need for clean water after disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes, tornados, flooding, and wildfires; or the terrorist attacks on the Pentagon and World Trade Center.”
“Having access to safe, clean drinking water is important to everyone’s survival, but this becomes paramount during disasters such as this when municipal supplies may become compromised,” said Hogan. During these times, bottled water is a necessary and reliable option to deliver clean, safe drinking water.
IBWA member companies are working around the clock to get bottled water to affected areas in several ways. For example, one company has so far this week delivered 12 truckloads of bottled water to Red Cross warehouses in Middletown and Somerset, New Jersey, for immediate distribution to Jersey Shore towns most in need of clean drinking water. Additionally, through AmeriCares, bottled water has been distributed to The Salvation Army for Nassau County, the Food Bank for New York City, and Vermont food banks to help residents affected by the storm.
Other IBWA members are working through Convoy of Hope, which has deployed a rapid response team, complete with emergency relief supplies, to its Long Beach, New York, distribution facility. The organization is receiving and distributing daily tractor-trailer loads of supplies including bottled water, microwaveable meals, trash bags, and other basic essentials.
The New Jersey Department of Health noted in a recent email to IBWA, "We at NJDOH and the citizens of New Jersey appreciate your organization's and its members' generosity and concern during our time of need."