Lewis RV Blog

  • Published on May 14, 2014

    Camp Smart, Prevent Illness

    With camping season in full swing, now is a good time for a reminder on how to prevent yourself from getting several illnesses when camping and hiking.

    While camping is one of our favorite pastimes in America, sometimes we can become a little lazy in the way that we camp. From not cooking food properly to drinking contaminated water, we can put ourselves at risk if we are not careful.

    Take a look at these helpful hints on ways to prevent diseases from camping.

    Preventing Food Illness

    When traveling with food, make sure that if it is a cold food, it remains cold, and if it is a hot food, that it remains hot. 

    The danger zone for bacteria growth is between 40°F and 140°F. If meat such as chicken or beef is below 140°F, bacteria can grow very quickly, causing you to get sick if you consume the undercooked meat.

    If you are carrying food for a day trip, it can be dangerous to leave food out for more than 2 hours taht needs to be a certain temperature. Most likely the food in question would be in the temperature “danger zone”, allowing bacteria to grow.

    If you plan on carrying snacks or meals with you on a hike, it is best to carry non-perishable foods. If you do carry meats, make sure that you are able to keep them cold with an icepack, or warm in a tight casserole container.

    Preventing Illness from Untreated Water

    If you find yourself without bottled or clean water and needing to resort to backcountry water sources, these can be contaminated by passing birds, animals, or even humans.

    These water sources need to be treated in order to safely consume the water. Here are some tips on how to safely clean and purify your water source.

    Water Tips

    If you can find it, the less dirty the water is, the more effective any treatment method will be.

    The treatment options are as follows:


    Boil the water from anywhere between 5-10 minutes

    Chemical Treatment:

    Although not popular because of digestive issues, chemical treatments like chlorine and iodine do work. If you are concerned that chemicals could do more harm to you than good, consult your doctor before using chemical treatments in your water.

    Filters and Purifiers:

    Filters are designed to strain out pathogens as water is forced through them.

    To protect against viruses, treat your water with iodine before filtering it. The iodine will eliminate the viruses, while the pathogens will be eliminated by the filter.

    Purifiers consist of several filter stages that trap larger pathogens. When mixed with iodine treatment, they can attack the viruses in the water.

    UV Light Purifiers: 

    The UV Light Purifier is probably the best option of this list.

    They are portable devices that treat small amounts of water at a time. The UV light shines through water, damaging the DNA of microbes, pathogens and viruses, so they cannot reproduce and cause illness. 

    Lewis RV Center

    We hope these tips help you to be safe this camping season.

    If you need service done to your RV to ensure you get to your destination safely, let Lewis RV Center help you get back on the road.

    We offer an outstanding service department that features 8 RV service bays and all of our technicians in our shop have been trained and certified by the Recreational Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA).

    So stop on by Lewis RV Center today!




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