A new study has found that as far as cleanliness goes, it’s better to use paper towels than hand dryers in public restrooms.
But that study glosses over the truly frightening explanation behind the findings – fecal plumes.
That’s right. Bathrooms are home to clouds of poop particles created with each flush.
You can almost see the University of Connecticut researchers behind the study convening at happy hour and slipping into a beer-fueled debate about what’s more sanitary, paper towels or hand dryers.
But with these people being scientists, they can’t leave well enough alone.
Thus they went to work on a study to be called “Deposition of Bacteria and Bacterial Spores by Bathroom Hot-Air Hand Dryers,” and published in “Eww, Gross” magazine (no, not really, it was published in the scholarly sounding Applied and Environmental Microbiology).
They found that each time a toilet is flushed, an angel loses its – no, wait, that’s not it. The truth is much worse.
Why hand dryers are disgusting
Each flush launches fecal particles into the air, with said particles landing on hair dryers where they wait to be blown directly onto damp flesh. And that is just the beginning of their germ-spreading journey.
Paper towels, however, are shielded from this feces-laden fog by dispensers, providing a safe environment. Assuming, of course, floating particles have not yet found their way to your hands, or lay in wait on whatever levers or knobs that must be manipulated to dispense those towels.
While such unsanitary flush-fountains are bad news in general, imagine what must occur in bathrooms where toilets are equipped with various jets and mists that turn hygiene into a luxurious experience.
Forget a simple plume. It’s more of a monsoon.
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