Ever wonder how clean your ice is as you drink that cold, ice-filled beverage? If you’re like most of us, more than likely, you don’t give the concept of dirty ice much thought at all! You just sip away and enjoy.
And why should you concern yourself with such things? We visit a restaurant, lay in a hospital bed, visit grandma at the nursing home, and we take it for granted that what we are drinking is clean and free from things that can do us harm.
That is not always the case …
The reality is there is a very good chance that the beverage you are consuming is filled with ice that came from an ice machine that is infested with bacteria, slime, fungus, and mold. I know! Yuck!!
And if you run a facility where you use ice machines, you may be contributing to this on-going and often unspoken issue.
There are many instances where facility operators are not appropriately addressing the cleanliness of the ice machines which leads to the growth of bacteria like E.coli, and other Coliform bacteria as well as toxic black mold, fungus, and slime – all of which can result in sickness and, in some extreme cases, death.
Unfortunately it goes back to two concepts and widely held bad practices:
- Out of site – out of mind
- Ice is the forgotten food
Representative Donna Garren, from National Restaurant Association would beg to differ on the idea that “ice is the forgotten food” as she states in this Dateline video clip.
However, when you hear stories such the one below from ABC News, it makes you wonder how accurate the National Restaurant Association is being when it comes to issues surrounding ice. You can’t see these things growing inside your ice machine and they grow at alarming rates.
… And this was just one of many articles and videos we found (see below in the additional resources area) on how often the safety of ice is getting overlooked.
Department of Health and industry standard practices regarding handling of ice and sanitization of ice machines are often not followed in many places where ice is served, sometimes resulting in devastating circumstances.
As an owner of a restaurant, nursing home, hospital, or any other facility where you are responsible for the welfare of others whilst they are on your premises, what sort of impact do you think devastating circumstances would have on your business AND your life?!
You’re in the comfort of your home and you hear a knock at the door. You approach the door and you receive a wrongful death claim notice for killing a boy at your place of business. Your heart sinks.
You jump on the phone and call a lawyer who begins to work with you creating a plan of action to address the situation. Months later and countless dollars of lawyer fees, you have an additional $3 MILLION Dollar settlement to pay to the victims’ family.
Think that can’t happen?
Tell that to the Phoenix, Arizona Golf Course that paid $3 Million dollars to the Beeman family after their healthy 15 year old son mysteriously died the morning after playing in a junior golf tournament in 2002. The mystery of the boy’s death was solved when it was discovered that he, along with 80 other golfers, became sick with a gastrointestinal illness caused by drinking contaminated ice infected with the Norovirus – watch video below from NBC Dateline.
It is terribly sad to think that just a little proactive care on the course owner’s part to ensure the safety of the facility’s ice machines could have saved a young life, months of legal issues, millions of dollars, and the reputation of the business.
Had the owners practiced safe handling of ice, sanitized the machine and installed a device like Tek Express’ Biozone IceZone® which kills bacteria and inhibits bacterial, mold and slime growth in ice machines that 15 year old may be playing on the PGA Tour today. Just one bacteria can multiply over 24 hours to form a colony of 4,722,366,482,869,650,000,000 bacteria! You can either sanitize your machine every few hours or have Tek Express install an Icezone® device for you which operates 24 hours per day every day for less than 1 penny per day to make ice safe.
We often get transfixed with daily activities so much so that we forget that what’s not in front of us or, worse yet, growing in our ice machines day in and day out. Left unchecked this killer in your ice machine can ultimately destroy your business, your reputation, and, worse yet cause someone to become ill or die.
Are you willing to wait to see if something goes wrong or are you going to be proactive in taking the necessary steps to ensure the safety of your customers and patients? You can do ice right and while protecting these people, also protect yourself and your establishment.
For more information on how you can Do Ice Right and make your ice safe, please call our offices at (718)937-3171 or learn more about IceZone® here.
- Your Ice Could Be Dirty by NBC News
- How Dirty is Your Ice by ABC News
- Fast-Food Ice Dirtier Than Toilet Water by ABC News
- Chilling truth about the ice in your drink which is covered in bacteria by DailyMail
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