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Microbiologist advocates silver ions to fight on-board bacteria

Microbiologist advocates silver ions to fight on-board bacteria
A microbiologist is calling on the cruise industry to take more drastic action to minimise the risk of passengers and crew being infected with potentially harmful bacteria like E.coli, Shigella and Legionella.

Dr Richard Hastings, a microbiologist for UK-based BioCote, said that by adopting antimicrobial silver ion technology into highly populated areas on board, bacteria levels can be lowered by up to 99.99%, dramatically reducing the possibility of cross contamination. Various studies also show silver ions to be anti-viral.

‘Cruise ships are characterised by high population densities, crowded public rooms and living accommodation, shared sanitary facilities and common water and food supplies. Because of this, passengers and crew are at particular risk from outbreaks of infectious disease,’ Hastings said.

The microbiologist believes manufacturers of products for the cruise industry should think seriously about adopting silver ion technology into their products at the manufacturing stage. He also believes that those with the purchasing power for ships should insist the products they buy feature this type of technology.

‘It is proven through independent laboratory testing that silver ion technology is highly effective against a wide range of disease causing bacteria,' he said, adding that BioCote, works with manufacturers to incorporate its technology at the production stage, providing built-in antimicrobial protection for the lifetime of the product.