Cleaning & Maintenance Management Online

EPA warns of products with unsubstantiated H1N1 kill claims

December 2, 2009
WASHINGTONThe U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is warning consumers to beware of manufacturers who may market ineffective and unregistered products or services that claim to disinfect surfaces or entire rooms against the H1N1 influenza A (swine flu) virus, according to a press release.
According to the release, similar to the way the green and sustainable movements led to "greenwashing," so too has swine flu hysteria bred false kill claims of some products and services.
The EPA registers disinfectants for use on hard surfaces, and when used according to label directions, such products will be effective against influenza A viruses, including the 2009 H1N1 pandemic strain, the release stated.
Steve Owens, assistant administrator for the EPA''s Office of Prevention, Pesticides and Toxic Substances, said: "Unfortunately, some vendors may try to take advantage of people''s fears at a time like this and market products that aren''t effective or make unsubstantiated claims. Americans need to be aware of what they may be buying."
There are no products registered by the EPA for use in residential settings that will disinfect or sterilize the air or a room by fogging; claims for disinfecting carpeting, drapes and other porous surfaces are also unsubstantiated, the release noted.
The public is encouraged to follow the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention''s (CDC) recommendations for preventing the spread of the swine flu virus, which stresses frequent handwashing with soap and water and disinfection of high-touch surfaces, the release added.
To view a list of more than 500 EPA-registered antimicrobial products, click here.
Click here to read the complete release.
For related information, click here.