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America’s Dirtiest Surfaces Revealed

ATM buttons are dirty

Elders say we should be careful about we they touch and also wash our hands frequently. They are right. A new survey reveals the dirtiest surfaces in the US that most people touch every day. These dirtiest surfaces include ATM buttons, escalator rails, public mailboxes and gas pumps. Other dirty items are crosswalk buttons, parking meters and buttons on vending machines. This survey was conducted by the personal hygiene firm Kimberly-Clark Professional.

Major Cities Were Checked
This news is important as the flu and cold season is underway in the US and it lasts from September to April. The testers analyzed surfaces in cities including Philadelphia, Miami, Los Angeles, Dallas, Chicago and Atlanta. They analyzed the surfaces for adenosine triphosphate (ATP) levels which indicates the presence of mold, yeast, bacteria, vegetable and animal cells.

Beware of These Dirty Surfaces
Objects which have an ATP score of 300 or more are dangerous as they can transmit illnesses. The ATP scores table for common surfaces in the US is given below. The following everyday surfaces recorded an ATP score of at least 300:

  • 71% of Gas Pumps
  • 68% of Mailboxes
  • 43% of Escalators
  • 41% of ATMs
  • 40% of Parking Kiosks/Meters
  • 35% of Crosswalk Buttons
  • 35% of buttons on vending machines

The Solution
The onus of maintaining cleanliness and good hygiene lies with us. As most objects in public places seem to be contaminated, we should wash our hands thoroughly when we reach home or the office. We should also swab our office desks frequently with a suitable cleaning product to maintain good hygiene levels.

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