RV Germ Warfare

On one side we have the “GERMS” and on the other we have the “RVer”. Germs simply lurk inconspicuously waiting to latch on to any RVer that approaches their borders. RVers on the other hand, have the skills and weapons to wipe-out the nasty critters before they can assemble into any sort of organized, dangerous threat.

Germs that can cause disease or illness include bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites. Germs really do no harm until you come in contact with them, so I will focus on prevention. Germs typically enter the body through the nose, eyes, and mouth; usually transmitted from our own contaminated hands and fingers.

The key to prevention is to create a barrier between your hands and the infectious matter. Caution should be used when coming into contact with anything possibly contaminated. This is where some type of sanitary glove fits the bill. There are many styles and materials to choose from. I recommend a Disposable Sanitary Glove so when you are finished using them, they can just be tossed out.

Another preventive measure is to sanitize your hands following any contact with germs. I have never quite understood people who pass their hands through a faucet of running water and then rub them against a hanging towel. This only makes the germs “wet”. To effectively control the spread of germs you must use soap. When soap is not an option then a bottle of hand sanitizer or antiseptic hand wipes are the next best thing.

There are several common sources of germs around the campsite. One source of contamination comes from the misuse of black tank waste. There are many diseases that are spread through contact with human waste (cholera, dysentery, hepatitis, measles, polio, typhoid fever, amoeba, giardia, hookworm, pinworm, roundworm, tapeworm, trichina worm) are a few that come to mind. When handling black tank hoses and valves you should always wear gloves. When you close the valve, tip the drain hose below the valve to catch any spillage that may continue to flow. After you have finished draining the tank, rinse the drain hose and drain area with water. Do not use the same hose you use to connect to your RV for fresh water. The idea is to isolate clean from dirty.

The water supply (city water connection) to your RV can also be a source of germs. Most people don’t think of it, but before you go ahead and hook your hose to your campsite water hydrant, you may want to give it a once over with some bleach or disinfectant spray. In most campgrounds that I visit, I have noticed a few dogs. To a dog, a hydrant serves a totally different purpose.

Prior to using your fresh water holding tank it is advisable that you disinfect it. Sanitize the tank with chlorine bleach or an RV product made specifically made for this purpose.  Always use cleaners according to the specifications in you manual.

Another typical area for germs is in the galley. Your RV kitchen can be a playground for cross contamination of foods. You should always be careful when handling uncooked foods prior to handling anything that will make its way to the table. After you have handled uncooked meats wash your hands. You can purchase Food Gloves as well. Avoiding this practice will just allow the germs to hitch-a-ride to the dinner table.

Some may say that this entire approach to germs is obsessive over-kill and fringes on paranoia at its max. You may think that such compulsive behavior is truly unnecessary. I am just attempting to provide you with some of the weapons you can use to win this war. It is up to you if you choose to fight or not.

As with any battle, prevention is always the key to success. It is much more difficult to recover from an attack than to stop the advancement of the threat. Once you end up fighting the germs on your own battlefield (or in other words you get sick), you will come to realize it would have been much easier to wipe the enemy out at the source.

Article Courtesy of : www.BugSmacker.com : Copyright © 2009

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