WMATA’s going to clean stuff

Photo courtesy of
‘Shower Head Water Drops 7-26-09 1’
courtesy of ‘stevendepolo’

That’s about the long and short of WMATA’s press release today about what they intend to do to deal with the possibility of OMGWTFPIG H1N1 outbreaks this fall. Unfortunately this is reassurance that leaves you less assured than before.

Metro is using an environmentally friendly disinfectant cleaner to wipe down surfaces throughout the Metro system to help keep riders and employees from catching the flu.

The disinfectant is used to clean and disinfect “contact-surfaces” in the Metrorail and Metrobus systems. Metrobuses and Metrorail trains and equipment are disinfected every week, and will undergo more frequent cleaning if necessary.

Then slightly lower:

Metro has taken several steps to protect its more than 1 million daily riders and 10,000 employees from contracting the H1N1 Flu.

So to be clear: 1 million individuals a day move through the metro system. Every seven days, the system gets wiped down with a disinfectant. So grab that handrail with assurance that no germs will have been on it for more than 377 hours.

At first I thought this might simply be a reassurance of what was already being done, not a claim that this was an improvement (from what, exactly? Prayer?) but further down the release there’s a list of bullet points following the assertion that “in preparation for a regional flu event, Metro has taken many actions.” One was “Increased the complete disinfection of the Metrorail, Metrobus and MetroAccess vehicle interiors at more frequent intervals;”

The Mayo Clinic says that most flu germs live outside the body for a time between a few seconds and 48 hours.

Well I used to say something in my profile about not quite being a “tinker, tailor, soldier, or spy” but Tom stole that for our about us page, so I guess I’ll have to find another way to express that I am a man of many interests.

Hmm, guess I just did.

My tastes run the gamut from sophomoric to Shakespeare and in my “professional” life I’ve sold things, served beer, written software, and carried heavy objects… sometimes at the same place. It’s that range of loves and activities that makes it so easy for me to love DC – we’ve got it all.


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