Business owners across the Houston area have been faced with new challenges from Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) and COVID-19, the illness it causes. What are the different methods of cleaning and disinfecting your business to protect employees and customers from Coronavirus?
In this article, we’ll review:
- Sanitation methods for restaurants and bars
- Benefits of UV-C light for disinfection.
COVID-19 Sanitation Protocol for Restaurants and Bars
The restaurant industry has always focused on cleanliness in the kitchen. That’s necessary to meet department of health and food safety protocols. With the Coronavirus and requirement of higher levels of sanitation, you’ll need to extend that focus to high traffic public areas.
Your local health department will issue specific protocols for daily cleaning to prevent the spread of Coronavirus.
For regular disinfecting, focus on high-touch items in the dining room and bathroom. These include door knobs, door handles and push plates, railings, light and air-control switches, faucets, toilet flush levers and restroom counter tops. Many customers will not want to touch the door handle to exit the bathroom. Consider placing a trash basket next to the door to make it easy for customers to dispose of towels that they use to open the door.
For a deep clean of your dining room, you’ll need to remove everything from the tables to properly disinfect the table services. Look for an approved disinfectant with an EPA “emerging viral pathogen” claim. Chemicals in the list of EPA approved disinfectants include quaternary ammonium, ethanol, tetraacetyl ethylenediamine, phenolic, plus more common products like hydrogen peroxide and isopropyl alcohol.
If you are not able to obtain one of these approved disinfectants, an alternative is a bleach solution (1/3 cup bleach to 1 gallon of water), or a 70% alcohol solution.
When using bleach for disinfection, check the expiration date on the bottle, and make sure it has not been open for more than 6 months. Yes, bleach can expire! It has a shelf life of about 6 months before it starts to degrade and get less potent.
Do not use straight bleach — mix in the ratio of 1/3 cup bleach to 1 gallon of water. Allow one minute of contact time with the surface, then wash away with water. Make sure you don’t mix bleach or other cleaning and disinfection products together. This can result in toxic fumes.
Also, thoroughly wash the area after disinfecting with any of these EPA approved disinfectants as they can be harmful if swallowed or if they touch the skin. Have staff wear gloves that are appropriate for the chemicals you are using when cleaning and disinfecting. Bleach and other chemicals are highly corrosive and can be dangerous if not handled properly.
Benefits of Using UV Light for Disinfection
Chemical disinfectants are toxic and time consuming to apply. UV-C light disinfection is a cost effective alternative method of disinfection for Coronavirus.
UV-C light disinfection, frequently used in hospitals, uses ultraviolet technology to kill 99.9% of germs and bacteria. Viruses are killed at the DNA and RNA level, destroying their ability to replicate and multiply. There are a number of benefits to this technology as an alternative to chemical disinfectants.
- UV light is a non-toxic disinfection method. That makes it safe for use in food prep areas. Since UV light exposure can be hazardous to humans, it’s important that this type of disinfection only be handled by a trained technician.
- UV light disinfection is extremely effective at killing viruses — 99.9% effective.
- UV light can be managed as an installed light system with safety triggers (with automatic off switch if the device senses movement.)
- For one-time disinfection, portable UV-C light units provide a cost effective method and can be deployed on a full or limited scale overnight. UV-C light disinfection as a service allows you to delegate this task to an experienced company.
- UV-C light disinfection is safe. While people tend to associate UV exposure with sunburn and skin damage, UV-C light, when properly used, is a safer technology than harsh chemicals.
Cost of UV-C Light Disinfection in Houston
Purchasing industrial UV-C lights is costly. For example, mobile cart UV-C lights can cost over $10,000 each.
UV-C Light disinfection as a service is priced based on square footage. Contact PureHomeUSA today at 833-378-7466 to discuss your home or business sanitation needs.