Electrospun poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO)/hydrated iron oxide (HIO)/sodium alginate (SA) composite nanofibers with high ultimate tensile strength of ∼31.6 ± 0.4 MPa and good morphologies, such as smooth surface appearance and average diameter of 159 ± 55 to 475 ± 55 nm, were produced in the range of 50% HIO, with significant bacteria decontamination property (92.5% removal of Vibrio vulnificus) from high specific surface area and absorption property, and 10% SA, with anti-bacterial property, based on PEO polymer content. This approach, using HIO and SA, is an effective method to possess the multi-functional properties such as anti-bacterial/bacterial decontamination properties and good mechanical property for various applications in clinical, food, environmental, biomedical, protective clothing, and other areas. POLYM. ENG. SCI., 2013. © 2012 Society of Plastics Engineers.