NBC26 Special Report: Where The Germs Are
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- You pull in, you pump gas and within minutes you're finished, never considering the visitors hitching a ride. Everything from staph infection to the flu virus, even e-coli. Germs are everywhere, but how dirty are the things you use everyday?
We decided to find out, with the help of the SystemSURE Plus ATP detection device. It works by measuring the amount of adenosine triphosphate or present. ATP is a coenzyme used as an energy carrier in the cells of organisms but for the sake of simplicity, let's just say, the higher the number the more germs there are.
Our first stop, the gas station, where we tested the nozzle of a gas pump. The result, 50. Not bad. According to a testing chart, anything under 200 is considered clean. 200 to 500 is dirty and 500 to 1,000 is filthy.
Next we hit the ATM to test the buttons on the machine. This time things didn't turn up so spic and span with a reading of 368, this ATM was very dirty. Shannon McFarland uses and ATM every few days, she said now she'll definitely think twice. "Maybe get like hand sanitizer or something like that," McFarland said.
Then we decided to turn the microscope so to speak, on ourselves, testing the anchor desk.
A score of 900, the highest yet and filthy.
At this point just the numbers may be making you ill, but before you douse your house in bleach, there's hope. A new wave of cleaners, called antimicrobials. We found an entire line of them online at www.Syndicatemed.Com
Mike Kosak, with Syndicate said unlike regular anti-bacterial cleaners that only work while they're wet, anti-microbial cleaners work for weeks at a time. "When it dries, it then prevents any microbes from building up on that surface," Kosak said.
We tested out the Armor 90X spray on the dirtiest surface we found, the anchor desk. After cleaning it and testing again, the number went from nearly 1,000 to 8.