By J. Judson Wynne
Another option is to designate one person to be responsible for disinfecting all personal equipment, as follows.
- Put on a clean pair of disposable; or ballistic nylon coveralls, shoe covers, and rubber cleaning gloves.
- Prepare chemical decontamination mixture (see USFWS 2016) in 5-gallon bucket. and clean water for rinsing (in another 5-gallon bucket).
- Dump all equipment out of personal isolation garbage bags and place all empty personal isolation bags in a clean garbage bag.
- Use a nylon brush to remove any dirt and mud from boots, caving bags, knee/elbow pads, gloves, and other equipment (USFWS 2016).
- Decontaminate gear following the most recent WNS Decontamination Protocol (e.g., USFWS 2016). Submerge recently disinfected gear in rinse water following decontamination treatment.
- Once all gear is disinfected, nylon brushes and any other equipment used in the decontamination process are decontaminated following step 5.
- Remove rubber gloves and put on a pair of nitrile gloves.
- Decontaminate rubber gloves.
- Carefully roll up pant legs of coveralls so they do not touch shoe covers.
- Remove shoe covers and place in a garbage bag (same bag used to dispose of personal isolation bags).
- Remove shoes (the ones worn underneath the shoe covers) and place on ground in front of you.
- Remove coveralls by peeling them off and turning the suit inside out.
- Put on shoes.
- Place coveralls in garbage bag.
- Wipe exterior of garbage bag. Wipe inside of bag to area below where zip tie will be secured.
- Remove nitrile gloves following standard medical procedure.
- Place nitrile gloves in garbage bag.
- Close and seal the garbage bag with a zip tie.
- Double bag the garbage bags containing contaminated or presumed contaminated gear/garbage and zip tie shut.
- Wash hands with all-natural/biodegradable wipes or soap and water.
USFWS (US Fish and Wildlife Service). 2016. National white-nose syndrome decontamination protocol, Version 04.12.2016. https://www.whitenosesyndrome.org/sites/default/files/files/national_wns_decon_protocol