If we are in a game Family Feud, and you are asked what could be the dirtiest place in an airport, what do you think the top response from travelers would be? I bet even you would have to answer that it’s the bathroom. No matter that kind of APU aviation system an airplane has, the most important thing is the health and well being of the passengers. Get ready to be surprised what according to scientific study the dirtiest place in an Airport is.
Any place could be teeming with germs and bacteria. Hospitals, restaurants, public bathrooms you name it. Bathrooms could only have sticky floors and smelly toilets and you could only imagine bacteria after bacteria lurking around the area. However, according to a study from a Texas-based website for insurance; They conducted a study of 18 tests and they did it among 6 different surfaces inside an airport. With the aid of swab kits, they went on to identify places in an airport with the highest average amount of bacterial fungus of cells per square inch.
Be Ready for a Surprise
You’ll never guess it is the “check in counter”! Yes! The self check in counter contains an average of 253,857 CFU more than the rest of what you thought could be the dirtiest place inside an airport. One self check in kiosk, contains about 1 million CFU. Too bad they did not mention as to which airport it was. The first runner up among the places of being the dirtiest in an airport is the bench armrest in the airline gates, it has about 21,000 CFU. Last but not the least are the buttons on the water fountains. They contain about 19,000 CFU. Now, that was quite a revelation wasn’t it? Just when you thought you are thirsty and would want to have some water for your thirst quencher you can think again if you would like to go for the water fountain. Perhaps you can find ways to make sure that whatever you take inside your body is as clean as it could get.
Shocking isn’t it? But you can also only imagine the influx of people coming and going throughout the airports and airlines everyday. People’s luggages coming from places who knows where, and what kind of places they have been on top of. Indeed that makes the personal check in a lot dirtier than the kitchen or the bathroom. Also, any person’s hand must have come from places heaven knows where, and who knows what sort of dirt they get from the items they touch. From handbags, to phones to papers, to shaking another’s hand. Yes, the hands that we use for doing a lot of things is the carrier of those germs, that could be transmitted from one hand to another, or from one person to another.
Another thing that the researchers did was to do a research and study as well on the actual airplane itself. If you think they may have fewer germs compared to the airport, you are right on that. However this does not save them to be free from bacteria either. The dirtiest inside an airplane is the flush button in it’s bathrooms. According to studies, the bathrooms flush button contains 95,145 CFU. Next to this is the tray table. You may not notice this but microscopically it’s has 11,595 CFU and last but not the least again is the belt buckle. With 1,116 CFU.
Why is this such an important matter to write about. It is because sickness stems from bacteria that are lingering all over the place. You might say, well, our bodies already have bacteria in them so why worry? Yes they do, but nature has given our bodies bacterias that allows us to have some immunity. This way we do not get sick easily.
However if the bacteria in our bodies are way above the average it can handle, that is when it hits our bodies defenses. Back in the years passed, there have been reports of quarantined individuals amongst airports because of certain sickness that many people fear because of becoming epidemic. For example the SARS or Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome which has hit Aisa really hard back in November of 2002 and July of 2003. Bird flu is another of those sickness, and the scariest and most deadly was the Ebola outbreak back in 2017.
With all these being said, it is therefore important as a traveler to have a hand sanitizer handy everywhere you go. Bring a soap if you can and use it whenever you can. This is to keep you from getting sick, and keep you healthy and alive.
Lori Palermo is a corporate consultant who is experienced in the areas of fund administration, corporate solutions, human resources, technology and small business. He likes to share his knowledge about business and human interests. .