When Cleaning Becomes Toxic
August 29, 2019 Leave a Comment
Having spent the last 12 years trying to convince people to ditch toxic cleaners and sanitizers, I am rather hypersensitive to any evidence of these culprits. Just yesterday, I was caught scrutinizing the housekeeping cart in a hotel hallway. What poisons were used to clean my room? disinfect my bathroom?? Do they even know what's in this stuff?
But every day, occupants of buildings across the country are exposed to toxins from the very products intended to promote cleanliness and safety: familiar ingredients like bleach and borax, as well as unpronounceable like butoxyethanol and perchloroethylene.
And, by the way, we're seeing more lawsuits involving exposure to toxic chemicals.
Janitorial/housekeeping staff are particularly vulnerable, but so is everyone else.
Here are some facts to chew on:
- A janitor's annual list of cleaning supplies includes about 28 gallons of chemicals, 25% of which is composed of hazardous ingredients.
- Within just 26 seconds of exposure to cleaning chemicals, traces are found in every organ in the body.
- In the U.S., medical treatment and lost job time for chemical injuries to janitors amounts to roughly $75 million per year.
- Cleaning tools and equipment include an ominous list of personal protective equipment; special handling, storage, and mixing cautions, as well as a list of first aid procedures.
- Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) are confusing to the uninitiated, may be out of date, and don't include ingredients deemed "proprietary."
- Cleaning/sanitizing chemicals are linked to skin, eye and ears irritation; asthma, cancer and birth defects; liver, kidney and central nervous system damage.
- "Green," "natural," "environmentally friendly" chemicals are not exempt. These terms are unregulated; and even third-party certified products may be safer but not completely harmless.
Having been in the electrolyzed water (EO) industry for over 12 years, I am convinced that EO cleaning technology is the safest, most effective way to clean and sanitize.
- EO contains no toxic substances. I drink the solutions and spray them in my eyes during demonstrations.
- EO's sanitizer is powerful enough to kill nasty bugs like E. coli and MRSA in seconds, yet it's safe enough to handle.
- EO requires no special protective gear. Handling is safe, storage is eliminated.
- EO eliminates concentrates. There's no danger of spills or splatters that cause severe damage to skin and eyes.
Add to that producing EO solutions on site for pennies a gallon, and you have a winning -- and truly green –combination.
Do you know what's in the cleaners and sanitizers used in your building?
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