Recently a study was conducted and released by the European Textile Services Association that identifies a potential concern regarding work wear and the way that it is cleaned at home. The concern is regarding the concept of cleanliness and hygiene and how these two ideas are sorted in a person’s mind.
Employers assume that their employees are taking the appropriate precautions and washing their clothing separately from their personal belongings. The study was conducted across 4 European countries.
Yet, the studies have shown that this is not the case.
What the studies revealed was that most workers while they realize that high temperatures kill bacteria most of them set their washing machines to the standard washing cycle which is a lower temperature (usually around 48C) which is not hot enough to kill the bacteria.
Wash Your Work Clothes and Personal Clothing Separately
The research results also showed that on average 1 in 4 workers are concerned about their work wear contaminating their personal laundry. The other 3 out of 4 do not think about the potential contamination that may affect not only their own personal clothing but the clothing of their loved ones as well.
Washing your work clothes separately may be a good idea because of the potential to cross contaminates your personal clothing and the personal clothing of those you care about. This study was conducted to discuss the implications of contaminated work wear at the work place. It does not take into consideration the negative effects of contamination at home.
The results were astounding with a whopping 58% of workers do not consistently wash their clothing separately from their personal clothing.
Only 48% of workers actually sort their work wear from their personal belongings. This combined with 50% of the workers traveling to and from work in their work wear and the complete picture starts to become clearer.
If you are a worker and you work at a job site where hygiene and cross contamination is a possible risk it is a good idea to go ahead and take a few extra precautions in order to protect yourself and your family from possible bacteria and other contaminates.
The study noted that employer’s with higher risk work sites may want to consider including commercial washing of the workers uniforms but if this is not an option at your workplace that doesn’t mean that you cannot protect yourself.
A few steps you can take to decrease your exposure is to dress for the job on the job and change before getting into your vehicle. Wash your work wear separately from your personal belongings and wash it on a higher setting than you would your personal belongings. These few extra steps can help to prevent the spread of contaminates in your home.
At The Coalface Boots, Workwear and Safety
Shop 5/281-283 Penshurst Street,
North Willoughby, NSW 2068
(02) 9417 1292