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Student Project: Toilet Water Cleaner Than Ice

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Student Project: Toilet Water Cleaner Than Ice

Old 02-19-06, 06:23 PM
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Student Project: Toilet Water Cleaner Than Ice

Student Project: Toilet Water Cleaner Than Ice

(CBS4 News) TAMPA A seventh-grade Florida student was awarded first place for her science fair project that found some toilet water is cleaner than ice served at area restaurants.

Student Jasmine Roberts, 12, checked five fast-food restaurants near the University of South Florida in Tampa, and found that 70% of the time, there was more bacteria in the ice people were drinking than there was in the same restaurants' toilet water.

Jasmine says at each restaurant she flushed the toilet once, then used sterile gloves to gather samples.

She also collected ice from soda fountains and asked for cups of ice at drive thru windows. She then tested the samples at a lab.

"When I get ice, sometimes I order ice just to chew on it, and now I know I'm not going to do that anymore just because of the amount of bacteria I found," Roberts said.

Since the Benito Middle School student completed the project, she has received international attention.

Dr. Daniel Lim, who is a microbiology professor at USF, said he was not surprised the toilet water had less bacteria than restaurant ice.

"If you don't clean the receptacle, the materials routinely, there may be a possibility of biofilm or residual material remaining in that receptacle," Lim said.

Jim Griffith, the president of Suncoast Ice Machines, sells, leases and services ice machines. He also wondered about the cleanliness of the ice dispensers the students sampled.

The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation checks ice machines during restaurant inspections twice a year.

Roberts won $800 for the project and hopes to win the top prize at a regional science and engineering fair.
Old 02-19-06, 06:25 PM
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Ewww....

Another reason not to eat at a fast food place. Of course, it could happen at a nice restaurant too.

-p
Old 02-19-06, 06:38 PM
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Doesn't surprise me. Hopefully people will take better care of their ice machines now.
Old 02-19-06, 06:42 PM
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why do people put ice in their soda anyway? it's already cold, right? ice means less soda and it makes it taste all watery when the ice melts.
Old 02-19-06, 07:08 PM
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toilets are cleaned more often than the inside of the ice machine, yet theamount of bacteria found in the ice still isn't harmful, or there'd be huge outbreaks

I bet the human mouth has just as much bacteria
Old 02-19-06, 07:32 PM
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we used to think an opposing fraternity was pissing in our ice machine back during the college years.

I found out years later when running a restaurant that you need to empty that bad boy out once in a while and clean in with bleach to kill the bacteria.

Of course, that didn't stop us from taking our "revenge" on the other house. *cough*egg raid*cough*
Old 02-19-06, 08:00 PM
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I'll never use a hotel ice machine again.
Old 02-19-06, 08:05 PM
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Originally Posted by tdirgins
Of course, that didn't stop us from taking our "revenge" on the other house. *cough*egg raid*cough*
an egg raid? I would have upperdecked their toilets.
Old 02-19-06, 08:35 PM
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Originally Posted by pedagogue
Another reason not to eat at a fast food place. Of course, it could happen at a nice restaurant too.
Why would you think it would be any different at a nice restaurant?

I really don't care. The world is a dirty place. You probably get more germs on a door handle than in ice.

Originally Posted by RoyalTea
why do people put ice in their soda anyway? it's already cold, right? ice means less soda and it makes it taste all watery when the ice melts.
To chew on.
Old 02-19-06, 09:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Breakfast with Girls
You probably get more germs on a door handle than in ice.
And yet again I must remind myself (no doubt in vain) to stop licking door handles.
Old 02-20-06, 12:35 AM
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You too dork?



Sigh...my favorite thing to do...
Old 02-20-06, 12:43 AM
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In the 4 years I was a cook, in various resturants, I don't recall ever cleaning out the ice machine. It may have been done, though, by the waitresses.

I don't worry about the bacteria too much. If it was bad, it would have affected me by now.
Old 02-20-06, 05:11 AM
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The dumbass kid didn't factor in the difference in ickiness between food germs and poop germs.

F-
Old 02-20-06, 07:55 AM
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I dislike eating at fast food "restaurants" and I dislike eating at restaurants in general. I can and prefer to make my own food.
Old 02-20-06, 08:15 AM
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Her project would be more meaningful if she could say what strains of bacteria she found in the ice. That info would be important, for instance yogurt contains live bacterial cultures. Bacteria are everywhere and for the most part harmless, I'd bet that the bacteria she found are as well. As others have said it's not surprising either because toilets are, or should be, regularly treated with anti-bacterials.
Old 02-20-06, 08:29 AM
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This article has a bit more detail. Apparently one of the bacteria she found was E. coli.
Old 02-20-06, 03:30 PM
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Originally Posted by RoyalTea
why do people put ice in their soda anyway? it's already cold, right? ice means less soda and it makes it taste all watery when the ice melts.
That's what I am saying. It comes out just as cold as if you got it out of the refrigerator without the ice. I guess if you buy one of those behemoth jugs of pop and plan on sucking it down over the course of a day, you might want ice, but why bother when all you will end up with is watered down pop? I think fast food places started the idea of packing the cup full of ice to avoid giving customers their full retail value. Bacteria or no bacteria, I prefer my pop without ice
Old 02-20-06, 03:35 PM
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Actually, being exposed to different bacteria and viruses helps keep your body producing the good guys to fight germs. If you were 100% free from bacteria and viruses and then one day you got exposed to someone who had a cold, you could easily die within 48hrs.

But still, it is concerning.

However, did the girl take a sample from a toilet with few poopies in it or was the toilet already flushed and clean. Big difference.
Old 02-20-06, 03:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Parcher
I can and prefer to make my own food.
I find I don't possess enough chlorophyll for that, myself.
Old 02-20-06, 03:37 PM
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Originally Posted by DVD Polizei
However, did the girl take a sample from a toilet with few poopies in it or was the toilet already flushed and clean. Big difference.
Reading is fundamental.
Old 02-20-06, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Trelach24
The dumbass kid didn't factor in the difference in ickiness between food germs and poop germs.

F-
Or the caustic chemicals dumped in a toilet to kill all those bacteria and germs.
Old 02-20-06, 07:43 PM
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Originally Posted by dork
This article has a bit more detail. Apparently one of the bacteria she found was E. coli.
the majority of types of which is needed in the intestines to provide us with vitamin K and B
only the minority strain of E. Coli is bad
Old 02-20-06, 09:13 PM
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Wendy's is celebrating the news by releasing the:

Frosty Eau De Toilette

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