Public: Escalator
escalator handrail disinfectant applicator   (0)  [vote for, against]
prevents the spread of germs and bacteria

a brush located at one end of the escalator's handrail, preferably the end at which the handrail comes out of wherever it goes to, that continuously applies disinfectant to the handrail. it would have to be a quick-acting, quick-drying disinfectant, so the escalator riders would not get their hands wet. it would also have to be friendly to the rubber handrail so as not to reduce the life ot the handrail. aromatherapy versions would be nice, too.

with all the people that use escalators these days, at least some of them must be depositing germs and bacteria on the handrail as they use it, so i think that this would come in handy.
-- mihali, Mar 20 2003

Kings Cross Fire
Escalator involved fire [oneoffdave, Oct 05 2004]

This all you need. http://www.citizens...m/biohprotsuit.html
[snarfyguy, Oct 05 2004]

How about a basket of rubber gloves, just in front of the escalator. Gloves are deposited at other end and are cleaned nightly. (+)
-- silverstormer, Mar 20 2003

The quick-drying part is not such a big hurdle if the disinfectant is applied at the exit end of the escalator. This would give ample time for evaporation as the belt returns to the entrance end underneath the escalator. Since this part of the belt's path is hidden from view, it would also allow for the application of heat and dry air, if necessary for evaporation, as well as intense UV light as an alternate or additional disinfection measure.

On the other hand (man, I can't believe that pun was not intended, but, sadly, it wasn't), with all the people that use escalators these days, you're probably already immune to most of what you pick up there. If you're worried about escalators, how come you're not worried about currency?
-- beauxeault, Mar 20 2003

It is a moot point as to whether it is a good thing to reduce environmental bacteria. A substantial body of research suggests that an immune system that is continually challenged by microorganisms works better than one where the challenges are reduced by excessive use of disinfectants. So in theory a small amount of dirt is literally good for you.

However, the London Underground is something of a special case .....
-- 8th of 7, Mar 20 2003

Just wear cotton gloves like normal people.
-- FloridaManatee, Mar 20 2003

One of the alcohol based surgical scrub liquids might do this, however this would create an increased fire risk. As as the King's Cross Fire proved, escalator fires can be very deadly [link].
-- oneoffdave, Mar 20 2003

Maybe a UV light or a blast of steam would be satisfactory. But when I accidentally grab a wad of gum on a handrail, it won't be much solace that it was "disinfected"...
-- Amos Kito, Mar 20 2003

erm...Antibodies anyone. Stop keeping kids (and adults) in aseptic, over anxious environments and these develop quite naturally.

There's too much of this kinda thing going on nowadays. Last week I watched a woman wipe every surface in my local launderette before touching it. She even put rubber gloves on to handle her own washing. And then theres those bloody disinfect everything wipes for the kitchen, bathroom,etc. made to fill a gap in some pharmacutical companies product range(rant, foam) I hate em i hate em . You can even get ones to disinfect your BUM for heavens sake. For the love of mike, let the kids eat dirt and play with dogs, get your hands dirty and build up your natural resistance.
-- squeak, Mar 20 2003

If this is the London underground we're talking about then this probably means that y'all live in London, in which case you are all thoroughly skanked anyway.

London? eeeeeeeeeeeeeee yeurch!
-- squeak, Mar 20 2003

More than glad to hear it [Harold].
-- squeak, Mar 20 2003

Haha, there's fecal matter everywhere.
-- notme, Mar 20 2003

Notme please control yourself, and learn to use the restroom like everyone else.
-- Worldgineer, Mar 20 2003

//I never used to be so germ-conscious until I came to the halfbakery.//
I've often wondered what it is about this place that attracts obsessive compulsives?
-- krelnik, Mar 20 2003

gawd, just look at the muck on this keyboard.
-- po, Mar 20 2003

krelnik, I think you've misinterpreted Harold's comment. Maybe she's* just commenting on how so many of us halfbakers are germs.

*(apologies, Harold, if I've gotten the gender wrong)
-- beauxeault, Mar 20 2003

//I never used to be so germ-conscious until I came to the halfbakery.//

Because of the appalling personal habits of so many bakers here! Really, its disgusting! Some up the third knuckle, cleaning house. I’m spraying disinfectant all around as I type with one finger…
-- pluterday, Mar 20 2003

If only someone would introduce some kind of public toilet door direction standard.


Would "not touching the handrail" solve this problem at minimal cost?
-- -alx, Mar 21 2003

In that case, there's always the stairs. Stair users are generally more hygienic, possibly, so maybe the bannisters wouldn't present as much of a problem.
-- -alx, Mar 21 2003

Escalator handrails can be bought with an internal disinfectant...
-- jbenoit, Apr 16 2003

Place a great big microwave above the handrail. That way all the germs get fried. You may have to supply people with some kind of microwave-resistant suit before they board the escalator, but a minor inconvenience compared with having to exercise those white blood cells.
-- PeterSilly, Apr 16 2003

would sound like a good idea when a person that had just used the bathroom and had not washed their hands and don't wipe with enought toilet paper boards the escalator and then you board after the rail has gone around.
-- jeffman, Jul 24 2003

How about a hanrail shaped like an aquaduct with a continuous stream of listerine flowing down it...
-- jvanzand, Feb 17 2004

random, halfbakery