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In Celebration Of The Loo: World Toilet Day 19 Nov

Press release

Tuesday, 18 November 2008

In Celebration Of The Loo - World Toilet Day Tomorrow (19 Nov)

New Zealanders can join Western countries to celebrate the toilet tomorrow, and their access to the porcelain seat, on World Toilet Day.

With nearly 40 per cent of the world’s population lacking access to toilets, Dyson is working to improve toilet conditions worldwide.

Dyson has become an expert in toilets since developing Airblade, the world’s most hygienic bathroom hand dryer. In the eight years it took to design Airblade and its digital motor, the technology company has been studying bathroom bacteria. Dyson has analysed over 7,500 petri dishes for microbiological experiments, and accessed 78 fresh chickens to contaminate the hands of 14 ‘willing’ Dyson employees. They were required to man-handle the chickens inside and out, prior to washing, drying and microbiological skin testing.

So in celebration of the loo, and raising the standards of public hygiene in toilets across New Zealand, Dyson shares these ten flushing facts:

1. Kawakawa’s Hundertwasser toilet building is the most photographed public loo in New Zealand, and possibly in the world.

2. The Keep New Zealand Beautiful charity this year crowned Hawarden Public Toilets in Hurunui, and the Levin Adventure Park Toilets, the best loos in the country.

3. Did you know damp hands are up to a 1,000 times more likely to cross contaminate than dry hands?

4. The world’s most hygienic hand dryer, Dyson Airblade, can be found in public bathrooms at Britomart, Eden Park, Michael Fowler Centre and some Westfield malls. These machines completely dry hands in ten seconds by producing an cold air stream flowing at 640km per hour – faster than a Formula One racing car.

5. Washroom air contains faecal germs and is laden with bacteria. Warm air hand dryers simply suck up this air, heat it up and blow it back on hands, clothes, face or hair.

6. A washroom, public toilet, public convenience, comfort room, toilet room, bathroom, water closet or restroom, are all names to describe a facility allowing use of a toilet by members of the public.

7. Urban legend has it that a Mr Thomas Crapper invented the toilet.

8. However the first valve-type flush toilet was introduced in 1738 by a man named J.F. Brondel. The valve toilet would undergo many serious revisions before it came to resemble the modern bathroom fixture we use today.

9. The "water closet" had been invented 150 years earlier by John Harrington.

10. Thomas Crapper didn't invent the toilet, but was an English plumber from the late 1800s who held nine patents for plumbing products.

Help to get the whole world flushing, visit: to read how the World Toilet Organisation, a global non-profit organisation, is working to improve toilet and sanitisation conditions worldwide.

For facts about the world’s fastest hand dryer, visit


Note to editor:

WTO organizes the World Toilet Summits and World Toilet Expo & Forum. Aim is to address critical issues of toilet and sanitation from technologies, development, to design, maintenance, social entrepreneurship, capacity building, research and other related topics, creating media coverage and momentum.

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