No more disinfectant tunnels in TN


By NS Desk 16-Apr-2020

Chennai, April 16 (IANS) The human beings are not like buildings and other lifeless structures to be sprayed with disinfectants as a protection against coronavirus as it may result in other complications like skin, eye irritants, said a senior health official.

The Tamil Nadu government has decided against the installation of disinfectant tunnels in the state as its efficacy is not proven but may result in other complications.

The District Collectors have been asked to refrain from permitting such tunnels.

Incidentally it was in Tamil Nadu, the first disinfectant tunnel was set up at the hosiery town Tiruppur at a vegetable market.

"The disinfectant tunnel may not disinfect a person of coronavirus. The best way to prevent the virus spread in maintaining social distance, washing hands with soap regularly. If a person is infected with coronavirus, then the virus cannot be killed by external disinfectants," the health official told IANS preferring anonymity.

According to him, the disinfectant also poses the risk of resulting in skin allergies, eye irritation and other unwanted problems at this critical hour.

"Tunnels may look fancy. There is an ocean of difference between having a bath in a village well and in a swimming pool. In a village well one can swim for hours but in a swimming pool it is not so. Further, after a session in the swimming pool one has to take a bath. The disinfectant tunnel is like the swimming pool," he said.

He also wondered, what if large number of persons turn uncomfortable and want to wash themselves immediately.

"Prevention is better than cure," he added.

The Tamil Nadu government was advised by an expert committee that there is no sufficient proof that disinfectant tunnel sprayers kill the coronavirus.

Meanwhile, many other states have started installing such tunnels at places frequented by large number of people.

"In Tamil Nadu technically speaking such disinfectant tunnels cannot be set up," the official added.

The chemicals used in the tunnel include Sodium/Calcium Hypochlorite or Hydrogen peroxide.



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