Keeping High Performance Student Athletes Safer with Goodway

CBS Sports released a 2016 report detailing how three of the nation’s largest colleges earn and spend money from their sports programs. During the 2014-2015 season, Ohio State made $52,000,000 from football ticket sales alone. With 130 players on the football roster, hypothetically each player brought in $400,000 of revenue for the school. With so much revenue per football player, there is even more incentive to make sure student athletes don’t get sick because of something preventable, like athlete’s foot in the shower or a bad cough from mold in the training center air conditioning.

Anyone who has been to a gym knows they tend to be damp, musty, moldy, and many surfaces like weight benches and shower stalls are rarely wiped clean. This constantly moist environment is where sweat and bacteria mix to create some of the nastiest germs found anywhere outside of a toilet. Infections like Athletes’ Foot and Staphylococcus Aureus can be easily spread from surfaces in the locker room.

The National Athletic Trainers’ Association position paper on skin diseases suggests that not only are athletes responsible for infection prevention, but that “custodial staff must be included in the educational programs about infectious agents to be able to adequately help in daily disinfection of the facilities.” To avoid sicknesses and preventable illness universities need procedures for infection control, HVAC maintenance, and cleaning.

Surface disinfection is not difficult so long as the right chemicals and equipment are used regularly. The BioSpray®-10 surface sanitizing system from Goodway Technologies uses BioSpray®- D2 Sanitizer, a rapid kill surface sanitizer/disinfectant spray approved for “Food Contact Surfaces without a Rinse” and is a combination of isopropyl alcohol and a powerful quaternary ammonium compound which kills 99.999% of detectable pathogens. The BioSpray®-10 machine is light and portable and does not need electrical power to operate. Cleaners can come in after games or practice and quickly move the device between rooms and disinfect any surfaces the student athletes touched. Because BioSpray®-D2 does not need to be wiped down or rinsed away, once a surface is sprayed no more work is required by the cleaners. The disinfectant kills the germs then evaporates away. The same system can even be used in a variety of areas like the gym, cafeteria or dorm rooms. The sanitizer can be effective against a variety of bacteria, viruses and fungi. It can be effective to help keep MRSA, Listeria, Norovirus and Trichophyton mentagrophytes (a leading case of Athlete’s Foot) to name a few, at bay.

Infections from touching contaminated surfaces is only one way athletes get sick in locker rooms and training facilities. When improperly maintained, the HVAC systems in these buildings can grow mold and spread bacteria through the duct system and into people’s lungs.

Chilled water cooling coils fouled with dust and dirt mix with condensate and begin to slow the flow of air through the system. Cooling performance suffers and the dust-water mixture begins to grow mold and distribute the spores throughout the facility. Hard working athletes breathe in those spores and can get shortness of breath, coughs, and may be sidelined with respiratory infections. The way to prevent contamination buildup on coils is with maintenance using CoilShine® Coil Cleaning Solution applied with the CoilPro® CC-400HF HiFlo® Coil Cleaner. The CC-400HF is a compact machine that delivers 400 psi of cleaning power with 3 gpm of flow. The low pressure, high flow is perfect for cleaning the dirtiest coils to get air moving through the system again. CoilShine® coil cleaner is a biodegradable, non-caustic, non-acidic alkaline coil cleaner designed to clean even the dirtiest coils.

The HVAC system’s cooling towers also need consistent and thorough maintenance to function properly. Poorly maintained cooling towers create a negative ripple effect through the HVAC system because towers clogged with debris do not reject building heat correctly and prevent the chillers from working efficiently. A chiller connected to a dirty cooling tower runs longer and harder wasting money and risking a breakdown. Also, without proper cleaning, cooling towers quickly corrode and dirty condenser water and fouled tower fill get coated with smelly and dangerous biofilms.

Cooling tower cleaning involves dirt and scale removal. A commonly used scale removal system is Goodway’s TFC-200 Cooling Tower Fill Cleaner with ScaleBreak® Gel. The tower fill cleaning system can dissolve scale from years of neglect and restore tower fill to like-new condition. With the scale removed, maintenance staff should go one more step and disinfect the tower to remove bacteria and biofilms including those that harbor Legionella with a surfactant like BioSpray® Tower. The EPA registered biocide and disinfectant kills 99.9% of Legionella pneumophila on hard non-porous surfaces.

The same TFC-200 applicator used to spray ScaleBreak®-Gel on the tower fill can also be used to apply Goodway’s BioSpray® Tower. A descaled and disinfected tower raises system efficiency and prevents bacteria from infiltrating into the practice facilities causing infections and illnesses to the athletes inside.

Once the cooling towers are clean and disinfected, maintenance staff should turn their attention to cleaning the chiller and heat exchanger tubes to maintain maximum heat transfer.  A portable and easy to use a machine like the RAM-4 Chiller Tube Cleaner makes quick work of scrubbing off buildup in even the longest and dirtiest tubes.  The simultaneous water flush keeps the brushes spinning through the tubes while debris is pushed out.  Technicians can use the RAM-4 on most chiller models with varying tube diameters up to 1” (25mm), by simply swapping out the shafts and brushes.

College athletic programs bring in millions of dollars per year, especially for schools that win titles and have consistent winning records, but without healthy athletes there are no tournament wins and no trophies to display. Keeping student athletes on the field is more than just preventing injuries, it’s also keeping them well by ensuring their gym, locker rooms, and exercise center are germ and mold free. Goodway Technologies is your teammate and we’re scoring points for clean and efficient buildings all over your campus.

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