Washroom maintenance checks have long been traditionally recorded on a chart on the back of the washroom door. But these hand-written records may be easily overlooked by staff members who may forget to fill them in.

At Essity, we have addressed this issue with Tork Digital Cleaning Plans. These remove the need for handwritten charts because every cleaner and cleaning manager has a digital record of who has cleaned which facility and when. Jobs are allocated via the software and cleaners can be alerted to any urgent needs via their phones, allowing them to deal with issues swiftly.

The choice of washroom product can also help to enhance hygiene. Touch-free taps and flush systems plus easy-to-clean dispensers that avoid the need for any hand contact with the unit will help to reduce the cross-contamination risk.

Hand towels are a hygienic option for high-traffic transport facilities because they allow for a quick hand-dry. Air dryers typically take at least 10 seconds to dry the hands, and passengers in a hurry may not be prepared to wait this long – particularly if they have had to queue to use the dryer in the first place. Hygiene can be enhanced with the aid of a high- capacity hand towel dispenser such as Tork PeakServe which gives out towels one at a time and ensures that every visitor only touches the towel they use.

Cleaners can then tap into visitor data and refill via their smartphone or tablet, removing the need to make repeated visits to each washroom. Once they know in advance which washrooms are experiencing particularly heavy traffic and which soap and paper dispensers are running low, they can target those facilities alone. This frees up time to carry out other, more important cleaning tasks.

“One would expect travel and transport facilities to

implement strict cleaning and hygiene protocols to ensure the safety of customers.”

Tork EasyCube is now in place in airports all over the world including London’s Heathrow, Singapore Changi Airport, Paris Charles de Gaulle and Dallas Fort Worth.

Technology is also helping cleaners to plan out their day and tick off each task as it is completed.

Each towel is delivered in just three seconds which allows the visitor to take a towel and move on swiftly, drying their hands as they go. Paper towels have another major advantage over air dryers, particularly when an outbreak occurs: washroom visitors can use a clean paper towel as a barrier between their hands and potentially-contaminated surfaces when turning on taps and touching door handles.

There are other ways in which airports and stations are working to enhance washroom hygiene. For example, many airport washrooms now have ‘smiley’ feedback panels allowing travellers to rate their washroom experience by pressing a red, amber or green button. Such systems provide valuable data for washroom managers and enables them to respond to any poor feedback.

Passenger feedback is also being invited at airports through ‘Cleaning via What’sApp’ posters and branded cleaning trolleys urging travellers to send notifications of any cleaning transgressions or dirty washrooms so that the management can respond swiftly.

Good hand hygiene is the key to staying safe in high- traffic transit hubs. Operators should therefore ensure that all washrooms are well stocked and well maintained at all times – and they should flag up the importance of hand washing to passengers at every opportunity. TOMORROW’S FM | 45

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