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New Study Suggests Coronavirus Can Spread From Toilet Spray

Hygienic practices by restroom cleaning staff and patrons can keep germs in check

June 25, 2020

Hygienic practices by restroom cleaning staff and patrons can keep germs in check

Keeping public restrooms clean is a challenge for professional cleaning crews, especially during a pandemic when germs on surfaces can spread diseases like COVID-19 to restroom patrons. People may not realize how some of these germs get on restroom surfaces—from toilet spray.

Many restroom patrons do their best to avoid any high-touch surfaces that can be home to hundreds of bacteria. They use their shoes to flush the toilet and push open the door using their bodies, not their hands. However, they tend to forget that when they flush, spray from the water in the toilet bowl in the form of tiny droplets covers everything nearby. This spray may contain fecal matter.

While infection control experts have known about the phenomenon of for years, it’s an important topic to revisit as doctors have found that coronavirus can live and replicate in the digestive system, and evidence of the virus has been found in human waste.

In the latest study on toilet spray, published in the journal Physics of Fluids, a research team at Yangzhou University in China used computer modeling to show how the water from a flushed toilet could spray up into the air—as high as three feet,  CNN reports.

Cleaning staff can help remove the surface germs left by toilet spray by thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting public restroom surfaces. Restroom patrons can do their part by leaving the toilet seat down when they flush and washing their hands after every visit.

For more information on restroom tips to alleviate toilet spray, check out the latest episode of Straight Talk.

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