Water Surveys and Data Collection

Three teams of three students surveyed the island for water sources and documented location, structural characteristics and conducted water testing. The first portion of the documenting process included the location of the water source and any community information, such as ownership or community accessibility. Each team marked a waypoint for each water source on their GPS devices and noted the coordinates on their forms. If anyone was available to answer questions the team asked if water from the source was shared following a storm, if retrofitting was a possibility, and if the source ever dries up or tastes salty.

Water sources were identified as either groundwater and rainwater cisterns. For groundwater sources teams measured the well dimensions – well diameter (or circumference), well depth, and water depth. The diameter/circumference and water depth were measured to determine how much water was currently available in the well. In addition to these measurements, teams collected structural characteristics of each well. They noted how water collected from the well, if communal buckets were used, whether the well was open or closed, the height of the opening, and various vulnerabilities, such as cracks or lack of air vents. Each team noted any retrofits they would recommend, such as putting a cover over an open well, fixing a crack in the wellhead or a broken pump. Lastly, each team recorded any external storage of water, how it is moved from the well and where it is then stored

Information collected from rainwater cisterns included the cistern dimensions, whether the cistern was open or closed, height of opening from the ground, and how it gets water. The cistern dimensions helped calculate water volume. Each team noted the structure of the cistern, its structural integrity, and whether or not air vents were present. For cisterns that collected rainwater from roofs each team recorded the catchment method, how many gutters the building on the building, materials used as gutters (ex: PVC piping), gutter size, roof materials, and how the gutters/pipes were attached to the building and cistern. Each team then noted whether they felt the structure could withstand high winds and if they recommended any retrofits.

Data collected on water sources is available in Appendix A.