Oh, now this is ironic. When the pandemic began, the widespread use of self-service kiosks and registers expedited. They were always going to take over because the machines allow businesses to drastically cut back on labor costs, but pandemic times made them more of a necessity as a means to reduce exposure to Covid-19. However, those things are actually covered in filth. They’re a petri dish of dookie particles.
According to Daily Mail, health professionals in the United Kingdom have conducted studies that show just how dirty those things are. The National Health Service in the UK swabbed 19 different items people come into contact with on a consistent basis—bathroom door handles, computer keyboards, escalator rails. The results found that the self-service checkouts had some of the highest bacterial loads out of all of them, featuring a handful of bacteria linked to causing diseases in people, notably Enterococcus, which is commonly found in feces. Another bacteria found on self service stations was E. coli, which can cause bubble guts and diarrhea. The scientists found Candida albicans, known for causing yeast infections, on an escalator handrail. This bacteria is usually found in the vagina and mouth. Klebsiella, which can bring about UTIs, was found on computer keyboards.
Dr. Adam Roberts, an expert in microbiology at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine who analyzed the swab results, said the findings told the Daily Mail that “we live in a bacterial world—bacteria and microbes are everywhere, and we come into contact with them all day, every day.” Yup, we’re all just bacterial girls living in a bacterial world. Unless you’re a child or elderly, coming into contact with poop particles is likely not fatal, but you might get a cold or get a case of the runs. There is one way to drastically mitigate the effects of coming into contact with these bacteria: Wash your hands, ya filthy animals!