How Safe is it to Drink from a Public Water Fountain?

Cooleraid-Lilac • 02/11/2020

During these uncertain times, people are taking extra precautions to remain safe and reduce the risk of infection. Naturally, we are all questioning our behaviours and examining how best to reduce the risk of spreading the virus. One question we are noticing more is whether it is safe to drink from a public water fountain during the pandemic. In short, this answer is subjective and entirely depends on the cleaning practices of the organisation hosting the water fountain. There is very little evidence to suggest you will transmit the virus directly from the water. However, since the virus may remain on the surfaces, such as the tap, basin, and handles it is very important that regular cleaning and sanitation takes place.  

The Risks

The risk of catching diseases from a public drinking water fountain is very rare and most concerns of catching anything stems from the handles, knobs, and buttons. This applies to most surfaces that are in the public vicinity as viruses can live for a short period of time on various surfaces. To mitigate the likelihood of contamination our drinking water fountains are designed with buttons and handle away from the dispense point.  We strongly recommend regularly cleaning water fountains and displaying the appropriate information when the fountain was last cleaned to reduce the risk of infection.

Water Fountain Sanitisation

In our previous blog, we detailed how best to clean your water cooler and maintain high standards of hygiene. Today, Cooleraid would like to advise our best practices for maintaining clean water fountains to protect its users.

To keep your water fountain clean we recommend regularly sanitising the area surrounding the dispenser such as the buttons, handles, basin, and areas of close contact. Water fountains kept in public places that are in use must be monitored and fit for purpose. Ensuring that the communal area is cleaned is just as important and will encourage a safe environment for hydration. We recommend using an antibacterial spray that is suitable around food and not using any bleach or tainting products.

Sani Spray is afood-safe antibacterial sanitiser that is proven to kill 99.99% of germs, including MRSA, and has passed BS EN 13697. The sanitiser uses a non-bleaching formula and is safe to use in food and beverage areas. For more information about Sani Spray, contact us by email or contact a member of our friendly team.

Other Considerations

When using water fountains in public settings it is important to be mindful of others and take the best steps for you to reduce the chances of contamination. If you do not have gloves or a tissue to use it is recommended that you wash your hands afterward and avoid contact with your face and other surfaces. Note it is always encouraged for best hygiene methods that people drink from the flowing jet of water, rather than making direct contact with their mouth.

Also, if you are cautious of drinking directly from a fountain then a great alternative is to use bottle refilling stations. This helps ensure that no saliva is left on the fountain and that the area is safe for use.

Final Thoughts

The team at Cooleraid takes your health very seriously and encourages all organisations that have water fountains, coolers, and bottle refilling stations to regularly clean and have procedures in place to protect the public. If you need any advice regarding sanitisation and hydration then contact us today.

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