Wipes and sanitizers no substitute for washing with water and soap at petting zoos

Posted on July 18, 2011 by

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by Doug Powell

The Brits are hammering home the message: sanitizers and wipes are not enough at petting zoos; people must wash hands with soap and water.

Antibacterial gels and wipes are not a substitute for washing hands with soap and water. These gels or wipes may be unable to remove contamination in the way that running water can. However, using such gels after hand washing with soap and water may further reduce the risk of picking up these infections.

Dr John Clarke, a consultant microbiologist at Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust, said, “Touching animals, fences and other surfaces can lead to infection, as you may pick up these bacteria and accidentally pass them to your mouth. It only takes a small number of the bacteria to cause infection.”

Proper handwashing requires access to proper facilities; the Riley County Fair starts later this week (that’s in Manhattan, Kansas) and I doubt they gotten the message.

Editor’s note: If a child eats something with their hands after touching an animal and didn’t wash their hands with soap and water or puts their hands in their mouth after touching animals is when a problem can arise.

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Posted in: Family safety