by Brianna Crandall — March 12, 2021 — Waterless Co., a Vista, California-based manufacturer of no-water urinals since 1991, recently published a white paper that highlights the impact the coronavirus pandemic will have on restroom design in the coming years.
The white paper, What the Pandemic Has Taught Us About Restrooms, outlines current public restroom design and fixture issues and why they may need to be changed to protect public health.
For instance, in August 2020, a major US news outlet reported that researchers had determined that “flushing urinals can release clouds of virus-containing aerosols that [pose] a significant concern during the Covid-19 pandemic.”
This is based on a study published by researchers at China’s Yangzhou University, which reported that “more than 57 percent of these [aerosols] can travel from the urinal…and can reach a man’s thigh in 5.5 seconds.”
According to Klaus Reichardt, CEO and Founder of Waterless Co., these “virus-containing aerosols” are called “plume” and are typically associated with toilets. Reichardt continued:
However, now we know flush urinals can also release this dangerous plume. To address this, more low-flow or, more likely, no-water urinals will likely be installed in coming years. These help minimize or eliminate urinal plume.
The white paper also discusses other items in public restrooms that may need to be changed or eliminated in coming years due to Covid:
- Improving traffic flow by having separate entries and exits;
- Placing double-sided sink counters in the center of restrooms to minimize congestion and improve social distancing;
- Replacing electric hand dryers if further study confirms they may be releasing germs and bacteria into the air when used;
- Selecting cartridge soap dispensers to ensure hand soap is not contaminated; and
- Placing more handwashing messaging in public restrooms.
“This last point is more important than we may realize,” noted Reichardt. “An April 2020 report by the BBC found that restroom users are more motivated to wash their hands when they see restroom posters reminding them to do so.”
What the Pandemic Has Taught Us About Restrooms is available now for download from the Waterless Co. website; key segments will also be placed on LinkedIn.