Sanitising onboard, what are the considerations?

In a time where surface sanitising has become a vital part of cleaning, it is important to understand more than ever before about what, where and how to disinfect and the key factors that should be considered when choosing the right disinfecting products: 

  • Effectiveness ✅
  • Environmental effects ✅
  • Health and Safety ✅

To help answer some questions Angus has put together a Q&A.

Must a Sanitiser contain Alcohol to be an effective sanitiser?

No, alcohol is not required in sanitiser. There are many ways of effective sanitisation, alcohol is one, high levels of sodium chloride is another but this is very harmful to both the environment and the user. Ecoworks natural sanitiser is another and this utilises an organic acid which performs in terms of sanitisation to regulatory standards, longevity of effect and safety of use. It outperforms in terms of sanitisation, a surface will stay sanitised for longer and it's safe for the user and healthier to the environment. Alcohol will evaporate quickly and it is also flammable, not ideal for engine rooms or galley’s. 

What are the regulatory standards?

You need to be looking for a sanitiser that has been tested and approved to EN14476 and EN1276. Our sanitiser utilises eco-friendly, naturally derived, mild surfactants and a natural fermentation extract to produce an environmentally responsible and sustainable cleaner and disinfectant.

  • EN14476 against enveloped viruses for Coronavirus (e.g. SARS, MERS, COV-19), Poxviridae, Herpesviridae, Filoviridae (e.g. Ebola, Marburg), Flavivirus, Hepatitis C Virus (HCV), Hepatitis Delta Virus (HDV), Influenza Virus, Paramyxoviridae, Rubella Virus, Measles Virus, Rabies Virus, HIV, Human T Cell LeukemiaVirus (HTLV), Hepatitis B virus (HBV)
  • EN1276 for Pseudomonasaeruginosa, E coli, Staphylococcus aureus and E hirae

We also go that bit further, Ecoworks Sanitisers are also tested and approved to the following:

  • EN13697 for E coli, E hirae, Salmonella typhimurium, MRSA, Pseudomonasaeruginosa, Staphylococcus aureus, Listeria monocytogenes, Campylobacter jejuni, VRE, B cinerea, F oxysporum
  • EN13623 for Legionella pneumophila
  • EN1650 for B cinereal
Do I need to worry about what sanitiser I use on sensitive surfaces?

Yes, most ordinary sanitisers use quaternary ammonium chloride (quat) based technology that puts them very high in Alkaline and can be as high as a pH10-13. Bear in mind bleach is around pH13. Ecoworks sanitser is the other end of the scale at pH3 similar to a lemon. If you are unsure, any product on the market must by law provide an MSD (Material Safety Data Sheet), you will find most online, but if not, one must be provided when requested.

Are sanitisers dangerous to my health as the applicator or to the guests? 

Typical hazard warnings on quat based technologies include skin irritation, eye damage, very toxic to aquatic life with long term effects, and carcinogenic. For bleach and hydrogen peroxide we see warnings such as causes serious skin burns and eye irritation. In short the answer is really yes there can be some side effects. A study in 2018 showed that bleach-based cleaning products can be as damaging to the lungs as smoking a pack of cigarettes every day. 

At Ecoworks we use naturally derived ingredients such as organic acids and plant extracts to boost their effectiveness to be approved to BS EN standards as defined by the European Chemicals Agency

How often should we sanitise the boat while guests are on board?

The regularity of cleaning and disinfecting depends on your particular situation and what’s evolving around you. Every charter will be different, whether the guests are going ashore or just staying onboard for an entire week whilst at anchor. It’s important to stay on top of common touch points such as handrails, door handles etc, and to come up with a routine that all crew are aware of and keep on top of. Clean regularly and disinfect daily if not twice daily depending on the movements of the crew and guests.

Is it ‘food safe’? What is meant by this? 

Food Safe Sanitiser is a food-safe disinfectant that passes Disinfectant Suspension Testing Based on EN 1276:2009. Effective against E. Coli, Pseudomonas Aeruginosa, Staphylococcus Aureus and Enterococcus Hirae with a contact time of 30 seconds. So basically a food safe sanitiser is safe to use on food preparation areas and should be effective against common harmful bacterias. 

How long does the ecoworks sanitiser have to stay on the surface to be COVID safe? Why is it recommended to be 5 mins on your product but only 1 min on others?

Our sanitiser is tested with a contact time of 5 minutes which is the standard contact testing time for EN14476 approval. It may well be that a shorter contact time could be possible for our ready-to-use sanitiser against such viruses as Covid, possibly even 60 seconds. However, due to testing lead times we do not currently have the data at this stage to legally make that claim and we want to remain perfectly transparent. Products claiming a shorter contact time need to have data to back up a claim. 

The product also passes EN1276 against the bacteria Escherichia coli, Enterococcus hirae, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus, at a concentration of 1:10 the contact time being 60 seconds. 

Do we need to FOG the boat? 

Firstly, FOGGING is the term used to disinfect a space using a Fogging machine to create what looks like fog in a room. Fogging is an effective way of disinfecting an area although generally, Fogging should be viewed as an additional measure that is used following successful cleaning and disinfection practises. It should not be considered as a replacement for general cleaning & disinfection practices.

Coming soon, Ecoworks All Purpose Sanitiser Concentrate 1:100!