The explosive power of hand dryers may be blasting bacteria and other nasty stuff infinitely further across the room than any other hand drying method.
A team of researchers from the University of Westminster deliberately exposed their hands to a harmless virus, in order to then dry them using a variety of methods. They experimented with paper towels, standard hot air hand dryers and the latest jet dryers - aka air-blades.
‘Hand drying method with jet dryers may not be safe compared to paper hand towels.’
The result of the study was quite revealing. The jet air hand dryer blasted the virus a full ten-feet across the room while the hands were being dried. In the case of standard hot air hand dryers, the virus spread by 75cm, while paper towels led to the virus' spread of just 25cm.
"Next time you dry your hands in a public toilet using an electric hand dryer, you may be spreading bacteria without knowing it. You may also be splattered with bugs from other people's hands," wrote Professor Mark Wilcox of the School of Medicine.
"These findings are important for understanding the ways in which bacteria spread, with the potential to transmit illness and disease."