Travel The dirtiest spots on airplanes and how to avoid the germs

09:20  19 december  2017
09:20  19 december  2017 Source:   MSN

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From tray tables to aisle seats, here are some of the dirtiest places on airplanes — and how to avoid them. Humidity aside, there are a handful of especially dirty spots , according to research and advisories from travel physicians.

You can protect yourself from germs on an airplane by knowing where they are and what you can do to avoid coming in contact with them. From used tissues to fingernail clippings and dirty diapers, people stuff all kinds of germ -infested materials into airplane seat pockets.

  The dirtiest spots on airplanes and how to avoid the germs © Provided by Independent Print Limited We've all been there. In that long metal tube that somehow takes off transporting you to somewhere warmer, or colder, whatever you prefer.

Sitting right next to other passengers and sometimes in close proximity to bathrooms, can sometimes feel unhygienic.

But you can minimise the disgustingness of your time on board by steering clear of some the dirtiest areas on the plane.

Travelmath sent microbiologists to collect 26 samples from four flights to find out the dirtiest spots on airplanes and at airports.

They then analysed the number of colony conforming units (CFU) per square inch. CFU is used to look at the number of bacteria cells in a sample.

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Humidity aside, there are a handful of especially dirty spots , according to research and advisories from travel physicians. Here’s how to avoid them. Airplane tray tables. Drexel University Medicine only recommends one way to avoid germs in the seatback pocket: “Just don’t use them.

The dirtiest place, it turns out, is right in front of your seat. A recent experiment, from travel time There are a couple things you can do to help avoid germs on an airplane , proper hand hygiene being the number one priority. Why You Get Sick On Planes – And How To Keep It From Happening.

Here's the dirtiest places on airplanes: 

  • Tray table: 2,155 CFU per square inch
  • Lavatory flush button: 265 CFU per square inch
  • Overhead air vent: 285 CFU per square inch
  • Seatbelt buckle: 230 CFU per square inch

Alarmingly, the study found that tray tables was the dirtiest place on board.

The report said this was probably down to the short turnaround times in between flights.

And what's more, the University of Arizona told TIME that the trays tested were found to have had cold and flu viruses and rather alarmingly, the norovirus - which can cause diarrhoea and vomiting.

Many airlines report that the bathrooms get disinfected overnight and between long flights, while tray tables are sometimes only cleaned after the last flight. 

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So now you ask, which parts of the airplane you’ll likely find germs and bacteria that make someone sick? According to travel website www.travelmath.com, the dirtiest spot in a plane is the very surface that our food rests on — the tray table.

Here are the worst places on the plane and tips for how to avoid germs while on a flight. According to a Wall Street Journal report, airplanes get lightly cleaned overnight, and they only undergo a deep cleaning every 30 days — meaning those germy microbes can continue to multiply for up to a month.

How does the problem start and how can you avoid catching germs?

James Barbaree from the Detection & Food Safety Center of Auburn University in Alabama says the problem lies with the endless crowds of people, moving through airports and planes.

Barbaree told the BBC:

"All of us carry microbes on our skin, clothes, and inside our bodies. Some of these microbes are transmitted to other humans, and bacteria multiply in unclean areas."

Along with his team, Barbaree published a study which revealed how bacteria like MRSA and E coli can survive on tray tables, seat-back pockets. 

Travelmath recommends carrying a small hand sanitiser to help you fight off the bacteria on planes.

When using the rest room, Dr Zimring of Baltimore's Mercy Medical Centre told TIME that he uses a paper towel to open the door on the way out of the restroom. 

HT Fortune

Related: 3 Surprising Facts About Airplane Germs (provided by Real Simple)

Expert reveals whether it's safe to wash your hands in a dirty sink

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Dirty planes ; how germy is your next flight. The dirtiest , most germ -infested spaces on the airplane are revealed, and Sean Dowling (@seandowlingtv) tells you which spots to avoid .

Humidity aside, there are a handful of especially dirty spots , according to research and advisories from travel physicians. Here’s how to avoid them. Airplane tray tables. And one Auburn University in Alabama study found that MRSA germs survive for up to 7 days on seat pocket cloth — the longest it

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