And when we say dirty, we mean dirty…
If you use/have used London’s public transport services in the past, this will blow your mind. Brace yourselves.
According to the Evening Standard, a study conducted by microbiologists from London Metropolitan University found 121 different bacteria and mould strains on public transport across the capital- nine of which are the world’s most dangerous superbugs. Yes, really.
There’s more. Rather than the floor, swabs were taken from handrails, seats and walls- basically all the spots we touch with our bare hands. Vom.
The tube was the dirtiest type of transport, showing 95 types of bacterias, followed by taxis where 40 different varieties of germs were found. Buses came in as the cleanest, with 37 types found.
Beyond this, the data showed exactly which tube lines were dirtiest, and here’s what they found:
- Victoria line (22 kinds of bacteria)
- Circle line (20)
- Piccadilly line (20)
- Jubilee line (18)
- Northern line (18)
- District line (17)
- Waterloo and City line (16)
- Central line (16)
- Hammersmith and City line (14)
- Bakerloo line (13)
- Metropolitan line (11)
Swabs taken on the Victoria line even tested positive for Staphylococcus Aureus, a known cause of shock syndrome in women who wear tampons for too long, E-coli and the dangerous antibiotic resistant Klebsiella Pneumoniae.
Dr Paul Matewele, who led the study, told Wired: “Surprise is an understatement. We were totally confounded. The diversity of bacteria growing was quite a shock.”
You’re telling us, Paul. Before you head off on a mass antibacterial haul, though, he adds that the bacteria are mainly problematic if transmitted between sick patients, and those with weakened immune systems.
Just keep up your hygiene and you’ll be fine. Promise.