Let’s face it, airports, supermarkets, and retail stores are all extremely dirty places. We wrote about this in a recent article entitled “How Dirty is your Shopping Cart?” Knowing this sent us down the path of questioning why these spaces are so dirty. A lot of it has to do with the pure volume of people that pass through these types of locations daily, but it is also driven by the lack of quality cleaning options for shopping and luggage carts that leave them sanitized, but not truly sterilized.

We’ve all seen the limited cleaning options that seemingly exist from the moment we walk through most airports or supermarkets. In some instances these processes are nonexistent. In others, they are largely do it yourself, and even the ones that make you feel somewhat cared for with a staff member either wiping the carts down or spraying some sort of harsh chemical that you’ll literally touch with your own skin in a matter of moments (yuck) have big flaws.

Let’s review some of the options out there for cart “sanitization” – not sterilization – and I think you’ll see why carts are so dirty.

Wipes/Spray/Soap & Water

This method has one major flaw: it relies on either your own or an employees thoroughness… or lack-there-of. It is inevitable that spots will be missed, and you’ll place your hand on an area that wasn’t thoroughly sanitized. You will also encounter some level of mess with this cleaning method, whether it is a wipe that needs to be thrown away, or chemicals that can leave wetness or a residue on the cart itself. Wiping down shopping carts with chemicals has also been known to cause burns, or be harmful to children that may ride in the cart. Additionally, in a pandemic or global emergency, the supply chain for such cleaning products could be put at risk and negatively impact the ability for stores or airports to keep their spaces germ free.

Fogging Systems

We witnessed a recent push by many businesses to try implement fogging systems for cart cleaning during the heart of the recent pandemic. While these do technically have better coverage and reach of most areas of the cart, they are also messy and require additional costs by the business for employees to actually spray the carts. There is also a drying time associated with these types of systems. Carts may not be ready for use (dry enough) for up to 15 minutes after fogging. They may also not be completely sanitized until dry. For high traffic stores and airports, these systems proved not to be a viable option. Not to mention, it is now winter in much of the U.S. and many of these systems that were outside in the warmer months are now frozen and are unusable. This has created dirty carts and unsafe customers.

DIY Clean

DIY or do-it-yourself cleaning leaves the sanitizing of your shopping experience up to you, the consumer. Most of us have no formal training in how to clean a cart, or how much chemical to put on the cart etc. Let’s face it, the average customer cleaning their own cart is going to miss cleaning multiple spots, not to mention the products they’re using would only sanitize, not sterilize, the cart, meaning viruses, and bacteria would be left behind.

Introducing UVC Sterilization

With all of the above cleaning techniques focused on sanitization, we knew there had to be something more complete that would fully sterilize shopping and luggage carts. Thus, we created Soteria, a UVC shopping & luggage cart sanitization system. The Soteria system offers medical grade UVC cleaning power that cleans using light and has been proven to kill over 99% of viruses, including Covid-19. If you’d like to learn more about the Soteria Cart Sterilization System by Bluewater, please inquire here and one of our experts will contact you immediately with more information.