The Importance of Sanitizing Shoes during COVID-19

The forgotten contaminator

We know that washing your hands and keeping a social distance from people is incredibly important to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus right now. Essential businesses that are allowed to operate are sanitizing high-touch areas several times a day such as door handles, countertops and so on.

What people may not realise is that there is another common virus carrier and that is your shoes.

The recommended social distance ranges from 1.5 meters to 2 meters across the world as large droplets produced by sneezing will more rapidly fall down to the ground. As people across the globe continue to become infected and the speed in which the virus can be spread from person to person, concerned researchers and doctors around the world began to conduct tests on where the virus can be found.

Additonal research, such as a recent study by the CDC (Center for Disease Control), found that COVID-19 droplets can travel in the air up to 4 meters (13 feet)! When someone who is infected coughs or sneezes, the virus droplets land on the ground to then be walked over and carried further to other areas on shoes. The CDC conducted their test at Huoshenshan Hospital in Wuhan, China in the centre of the coronavirus outbreak.

The research team discovered the virus on floors, computer mice, trash cans, sickbed handrails and doorknobs. What is most revealing in their study is that half of the medical teams’ shoes tested positive for the virus.

Even more shocking, was that the floor in the hospital pharmacy, where no patients are allowed or had been, had a 100% rate of positive results for COVID-19. Meaning the virus was being spread from the floors in the wards by the medical team on their shoes. This also means that the medical team, patients, visitors, cleaners and anyone else working in the hospital could also been take the virus home with them on their shoes.

Someone with the virus coughs or sneezes in the supermarket and some droplets land on the floor, this is then walked through by someone else, the virus transfers to their shoes, and they then leave the store, get into their car where the virus is spread again to their car floor, and they then enter their homes with the virus still on their shoes. The CDC concluded at the end of their study that stricter measures should be taken to sanitize footwear.

Disinfect Shoes at the Door

At Notrax® we have several disinfectant matting solutions to help you further prevent the spread of COVID-19. Based on the resounding success of our 346 Sani-Trax™ sanitizing mat which has been used in the food industry for decades and often used as a defence to keep out contaminants in this industry during outbreaks of bird flu and other infectious viruses, our R&D has been working tirelessly to incorporate this solution into our entrance matting system to create a quick and easy disinfection solution for all entrances as a way to prevent further spreading of the COVID-19 virus.

Whereas before our entrance matting systems had three specific zones dedicated to scraping, cleaning and drying, the impact of the new COVID-19 virus and recent research on the spreading of the virus via shoes and other surfaces, has raised the need for an additional zone, namely sanitation, to prevent any bacteria from entering the facility or home.

Zone 1: Scrape to remove all large debris
Zone 2: Sanitize using a disinfecting solution or soap
Zone 3: Clean to remove any remaining dust or other particles
Zone 4: Dry to prevent slips and falls

The new Sani-Master™ tile has a large vinyl-looped scraping insert that can be filled with disinfecting solution or even a soap solution, that has also proven effective in fighting the Corona virus.

As traffic passes, the vinyl loops bend under pressure to immerse soles in the disinfectant solution while vinyl loops provide automatic scrubbing action that dislodges any remaining contaminants from footwear.

The modularity of the Master Flex™ system allows for a custom installation to fit any entrance in a large facility, such as train stations, hospitals, commercial shopping centres, schools, or hotels, to smaller entrances for shops, offices or even homes. The 50-cm modular tiles connect easily. Master Flex™ C12 can be installed by hand without the need for hammers or tools. The natural rubber tiles can easily be customized with a utility knife (and ruler and measuring tape, we remain perfectionists‼).

The connection system of male and female connectors attaches together without the need for glue, screws, clamps, rails or frames making installation, literally, a snap. So, any already installed systems can be easily expanded or converted to a new sanitizing solution. Further as our R&D department continues to develop this system as new research becomes available, any new improvements can be incorporated into the existing installation.

The Master Flex™ can be customized with a large selection of quality carpet inserts in different materials, patterns and colours. The 593 Master Flex™ C12 can even be fitted with custom-printed logo mat inserts that are printed in any colour or design which we have done here to further communicate the importance of cleaning shoes, maintaining social distance or to remind to also wash hands as soon as you enter the building as well.

The innovation in design, choice of quality rubber and carpet materials and advances in production have resulted in a more functional product. Now with the addition of the Sani Master™, the outcome is also a more cost-effective sanitizing entrance matting system.

Coming soon, available end July: