Leading microbiologist Dr. David Webber concludes that the use of hand dryers in the washroom does not contribute to the spread of Covid 19 and that warm air hand dryers are safe to use during the current pandemic. The virus is spread by droplet transmission and contact with contaminated surfaces. To reduce the risk of infection in the washroom, guidance from the WHO states that hands must be washed thoroughly using soap and hot water and then dried using either a paper towel or a hand dryer.
Dr. Webber’s report states: “Droplet transmission of coronavirus in the washroom is unlikely as the air is constantly changed, typically 8 to 12 times per hour, which will remove droplets, as will natural ventilation due to the opening and closing of doors. Many smaller washrooms are also fitted with ‘air purifiers’ to control odours and remove microbial contaminants. The risk of infection is probably greater in the general workspace where coughing and sneezing can release airborne bacteria which can survive up to 15 minutes in droplets and aerosols in the air.”