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160,000 Ounces of Prevention: WVU Tech Takes on Emergency Preparedness

With a water crisis impacting more than 300,000 people and a record-setting winter still fresh in the minds of Kanawha Valley residents, WVU Tech is taking steps to ensure students, faculty and staff have a back-up plan for emergency events.

The university’s Division of Student Life and Dining Services created a three-day emergency plan that includes a surplus of food and water to keep students fed and hydrated during an emergency situation.

To satisfy the three-day requirement, Dining Services purchased 5,000 ready-to-eat meals and more than 10,000 bottles of water.

WVU Tech soccer players pitch in to help Dining Services move 10,000 bottles of water.

The emergency meals, which have a shelf-life of 25 years, are of a higher quality than the military-style MREs most people are familiar with. Dining Services even conducted student taste tests to determine which products would go over well.

“It was important for us to find high-quality products that students would actually enjoy,” said David Templeton of Dining Services. “We looked for a product that was not only nutritional but also tasted good.”

The water has a shelf-life of two years and will be routinely rotated so that the stockpile remains fresh.

On Tuesday morning, nearly 30 WVU Tech men’s soccer players pitched in to help move the 10,000 bottles of water into secure storage.

“We’re in our first week of pre-season, so the extra workout fits right into our schedule,” said Shinya Turley, WVU Tech men’s soccer Associate Coach. “Dining Services does a lot for us. They stay late and get here early to keep us fed, so we’re here to help out with anything we can.”

Templeton said that working with students was a big help and that, with a plan in place, Dining Services staff can breathe a little easier about keeping the campus fed during an emergency.

“We put in the work and we’re certainly ready now,” he said. “The hope is that we’ll never need to use any of this.”

Check out more photos on the WVU Tech Flickr page.