Health & Safety


Take these steps to ensure that the water used in your home (or food service establishment) is safe:

Bring the water to a rolling boil and holding it there for one (1) minute.

Use a disinfecting chemical. If you cannot boil water, you should put 8 drops of common household bleach (about 1/8th teaspoon) into 1 gallon of tap water, then shake it and allow it to stand for 30 minutes before drinking. If the water is cloudy, use 16 drops (about 1/4 teaspoon) of bleach instead of 8, shake it, and let it stand for 30 minutes. There should be a slight chlorine odor. Use common household bleach that has 5% to 6% active ingredients. Use food grade containers. Don’t use bleach that has perfume scents added.

Use water purification tablets or iodine that many sports and camping stores sell.

Use purified water for cooking, drinking, and for pets.

Tap water may be used for showering, baths, shaving, and washing, so long as care is taken not to swallow or allow water in eyes or nose or mouth. Children and those with special needs should have their bath supervised to ensure that water is not ingested. The time spent bathing should be minimized. Though the risk of illness is minimal, individuals who have recent surgical wounds, have compromised immune systems, or have a chronic illness may want to consider using bottled or boiled water for cleansing until the notice is lifted.

Go to for more information on what a Boil Water Notice Means to you.



Mariners Hospital in Tavernier is opened and fully operational. But medical facilities in the Middle and Lower Keys is limited.

Fishermen’s Hospital in Marathon was damaged during the storm. A mobile hospital is being shipped and it will arrive early next week and become operational as soon as it can be put together and staffed.

The Lower Keys Medical Center’s Emergency Room is open and they are working to completely open the hospital in Key West.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Disaster Medical Assistance Teams (DMAT) have set up medical care stations at Florida Keys Community College on Stock Island and at Marathon City Hall. They are open 24/7.

Heart to Heart International has set up a medical mobile unit outpatient clinic across the street from the Key Deer National Refuge’s new visitor center on Overseas Highway on Big Pine Key.

The clinic provides basic primary care and urgent outpatient care. Doctors and nurses provide medical care, which includes tetanus shots and medications.

The clinic will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily.



Never use a generator, grill, camp stove or other gasoline, propane, natural gas or charcoal-burning devices inside a home, garage, or any partially enclosed area. Keep these devices outdoors, away from doors, windows and vents that could allow carbon monoxide to come indoors.

Opening doors and windows or using fans will not prevent CO buildup in the home. Although CO can’t be seen or smelled, it can rapidly lead to full incapacitation and death. Even if you cannot smell exhaust fumes, you may still be exposed to CO. If you start to feel sick, dizzy, or weak while using a generator, get to fresh air RIGHT AWAY – DO NOT DELAY.