Rail passengers and staff are facing an increased risk of catching Covid-19, Paul Tweedale, Managing Director at Tenbroeke Co Ltd, explains how UV-C light is a proven solution…
SARS, MERS and now Covid-19. The first two caused what seemed like huge disruption and many deaths, but in comparison to Covid-19, seem quite tame. Despite having a lower fatality rate, COVID-19 has resulted in more deaths than SARS and MERS combined.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has acknowledged ‘evidence emerging’ of the airborne spread of Covid-19. This is proven by a study in China in a paper published July 2020 by Dr. Li, a clinical doctor at the Dept. of Infectious Disease, Affiliated Hospital of Xuzhou Medical University, China. The paper identified how ten people from three families who had all eaten at the same air-conditioned restaurant in Guangzhou, China on 23 January, 2020 were infected by Covid-19 – due to the virus being spread by unsterilized air through the restaurants’ Heating, Ventilation & Air Conditioning (HVAC) system.
This happened in a restaurant, hence it can and is happening in any enclosed space – train carriages, station waiting rooms, offices, ticket buying areas, schools and places of worship.
Recent studies – China, Germany
UV-C light kills Covid-19
The germicidal properties of sunlight – ‘nature’s disinfectant’ – were established in 1877 during proven research by British researchers who found that bathing bacteria-filled test tubes in sunlight killed microbes. In the 1930s, a Harvard sanitary engineer demonstrated that UV lamps installed near the ceilings of schoolrooms dramatically cut measles infection rates among pupils.
Recently, a study published in Nature identified that a particular spectrum of ultraviolet light, ‘far UV-C’, ‘efficiently inactivates bacteria without harm to exposed mammalian skin’… ‘this is because, due to its strong absorbance in biological materials, ‘far-UV-C’ light cannot penetrate even the outer (non-living) layers of human skin or eye; however, because bacteria and viruses are of micrometre or smaller dimensions, ‘far-UV-C’ can penetrate and inactivate them.’ Covid-19 is new, but we can look to previous coronaviruses for insight – studies on SARS and MERS over the last few years show that ‘far UV-C’ light is safe for humans and kills viruses.
UV-C technology from PP-L is proven to kill Covid-19
Whatever the reason, pride, naivety or the desperate hope that a vaccine will be produced – which may take years – the result is that an effective, low cost solution is available today and is being ignored.
The TenBroeke/PP-L partnership is delivering UV-C solutions that kill bacteria, micro-organisms, coronaviruses and deadly pathogens in the air, on surfaces and in liquid.
The PP-L technology and systems, proven over 80 years, continually sterilises the air in closed spaces by either being fitted in enclosed areas or installed within the heating and ventilation system. In an HVAC system, it sterilises the air before it is circulated or recirculated whilst also keeping components within the system free from microbes.
The solutions cover stations, carriages, control rooms, offices, staff welfare facilities, retail outlets, escalator handrails, ticket office areas – essentially, the air and surfaces in any enclosed space. Critically, the PP-L system can undertake deep cleaning and air filtration without impacting revenue earning services.
Graphic 1 identifies the places where viruses breed and how the PP-L solutions stop the spread of Covid-19 and over 35,000 viruses and bacterial infections.
Ventilation and air conditioning
The PP-L UV-C disinfection systems for air and surfaces destroy germs 24/7 and ensure Covid-secure space that can be used with greater confidence by passengers and staff. The system disinfects the air and ensures the supply and re-circulation of clean air through installation modules in air ducts and air-conditioning centres. The products can be retrofitted within existing systems or integrated into new build.
Wall and ceiling units
PP-L wall and ceiling units protect products stored in cold rooms, and people working in Control Rooms, server rooms and warehouses. The system is made entirely of corrosion-resistant materials. The air sterilisation product is designed to be operational when people are present, however the surface sterilisation products can only be used when the enclosed space is empty of people.
PP-L robot technology can be used as part of a regular mobile surface sterilization cycle and will help prevent and reduce the spread of infectious diseases, viruses and bacteria. The robots are safe, reliable, user friendly and designed to be operated by every-day cleaning staff. The picture shows the Aitheon robot in a hospital room and an airport.
PP-L – high quality products that meet compliance regulations
• Fast tracked onto the British Government’s Coronavirus (Covid-19) response list of key suppliers
• CE marked for conformity and compliance with all relevant European Laws and Regulations
• FDA approved in the USA
• The only disinfection systems manufacturer to be ISO9001 & ISO 14001 certified
• Typical cost of £1 per hour for an average office
We challenge the rail industry to be open-minded and explore the use of UV-C solutions that are already used by the food processing and healthcare industries to help keep passengers and staff safe and get this country moving again.
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