School Fights H1N1 Outbreak Before Students Get Sick
By Adam Ghassemi
HENDERSONVILLE, Tenn. – The number of H1N1 cases in Tennessee has continued to surge. Doctors said the best way to protect yourself is with a flu shot, but a new method coupled with the vaccine could keep people from getting sick.
At Hendersonville Christian Academy, every student in kindergarten through the 12th grade uses the gym. But using hand wipes afterwards doesn't always keep kids healthy.
"There's a lot of traffic, a lot of kids. They're not always health and safety conscious so there's germs and bacteria everywhere," said Athletic Director John Taylor.
Taylor said he wanted to be proactive during such a harsh flu season to try and keep kids from getting sick.
That's why an ozone generator was in their equipment room Tuesday to attack bacteria where even the most thorough cleaning jobs can't.
"It's sort of like when you wash your car, you always look back and go I missed that one spot," said Stan Marlar, Jr. with 180 Zone.
For Marlar, the war on germs is personal. Ten years ago he was diagnosed with cancer, had surgery, but kept getting sick. Then the self-proclaimed germaphobe created an obsession with partner Rob Drexler.
Their process includes first filling a room with ozone to get rid of bacteria, and then using a fogger to distribute a chemical called BioShield 75 to keep more bacteria from growing.
"It's as toxic as 1/10th of a baby aspirin when it goes on wet," said Marlar. It dries within minutes and is then completely non-toxic, he said.
The process targets H1N1, MRSA and staph infections in places like locker rooms, hospitals and even recently a country music group's tour bus.
Taylor said he hopes it will keep students healthy during on the worst flu seasons we've seen.
"To have those areas sanitized, for me, was a top priority to protect the students and the student athletes here at the school," he said.
Each application lasts between three months up to two years. Company officials tell us they have a patent pending on their two-step process.
Students in the Academy of Energy and Power at Maplewood are busy getting ready for next week's Project Expo and had the opportunity to show it off some of their projects to Tennessee Congressman Jim Cooper.