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How Disgusting Is Your Desk? Part 2 – Results 

Wayne Harvey

How many of you have just worked through lunch and eaten at your desk?How often do you really clean your desk?Most of us spend more hours in a day in that one location that anywhere else, so we wanted to find out how dirty and disgusting our work spaces are.Wayne Harvey joins us now with the test results.Some of the information was surprising to us, but to Dr. Kirk Doing and the folks that did the testing, none of it was really unexpected.Let’s start with the good news. A place you wouldn’t think would be clean.”The men’s bathroom was one that didn’t grow anything, basically one colony, four maybe, so bathrooms are usually the cleanest place in the building. Everyone thinks they’d be the dirtiest, but they are usually the cleanest because they are the one place that usually gets cleaned on a very regular basis where the rest of the desks and some of the other clutter doesn’t, so dust is allowed to accumulate.”Now the bad news, which wasn’t an object. It was our photographer Kenn’s hands.”She had him basically put a hand print on a plate then you use your hand gel and then culture the same hand and while you can see a difference in the microbial load or the bacterial load, you can’t see that it went totally sterile.”Then, there’s the ugly.”This was the weather office. We grew a mold, mold spores are ubiquitous, they’re in the air, mold spores often times are allergens, people who have allergies often times are allergic to mold.”So what is our report card?”I don’t think we really saw anything totally unexpected. There was a sink that was cultured and we grew some organisms that we would expect to find in water, so that was good. We grew mold from a desk that we would expect to see, some of the air quality issues, the ubiquitous mold, so I don’t think we really came up with anything earth shattering I guess. But, we did find the camera was pretty heavily contaminated so if people are using…this was culturing both the focus knob and the ocular portion of the camera, so seeing that kind of a heavy bacterial load might want to prompt you to use some alcohol wipes or something to kind of clean some of those things down, things that you might not think of cleaning like you would your desk surface. But the camera and some of those pieces that are handled by so many people aren’t, so I guess maybe I would look some of those kinds of things more than anything else but I don’t think any of you guys are going to get sick or anything.””So I shouldn’t be afraid of going to work?””No I don’t think you should be afraid of going to work, no, no, nope”