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Study: Gas pump handles tops list of filthiest surfaces

A study says your local gas pump could

A study says your local gas pump could be the filthiest surface you can encounter throughout your daily routine. Credit: AP

Gas pump handles are the filthiest surfaces that the average working American encounters on the way to and from the office, according to Kimberly-Clark, a health care company.

Hygienists at Kimberly-Clark scoured around Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami and Philadelphia, collecting samples from hundreds of surfaces. The swabs the testers used helped reveal the amount of animal, vegetable, bacteria, yeast or mold cells that had collected on a given surface. The more biomass, the more likely there's a chance for illness.

Other leading filthy spots included parking meters, kiosks, crosswalk buttons, vending machine buttons, escalator rails, ATM buttons and vending machine buttons in shopping malls, the hygienists said. These surfaces become dirty because nobody cleans the heavily used touch-points often, or ever, the hygienists say.

So the next time you see hand sanitizer at the checkout line, pick one up for your ride home.

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