4 Unexpected Places Contaminated by Human Poop

Think the world around you is fairly clean and free of contaminants? If so, you might want to take a closer look. Sure, we’ve all heard the stories about how cellphones carry more germs than toilets — but what about all of those hidden sources that you’ve never even considered? Well, now it’s time to prepare for the worst: hidden poop. So where is the latest fecal matter appearing? Here’s a quick list.

1. Your local cosmetics retailer

Regulation has become virtually non-existent as Republicans have regained political power. Unsurprisingly, that has led to an influx of cheap knock-off consumer goods flooding the country. And where there is cheap makeup, you may find feces. A recent investigation found animal and human waste in counterfeit makeup – a discovery police only made after customers complained of adverse skin effects. IFL Science reports:

As well as human waste, [police commander] Marc Reina told the press that tests carried out on the cosmetics “were positive for elevated levels of bacteria, lead, and traces of animal feces.” This could be the reason why people were having adverse reactions to their eyeliner, lipstick, and mascara – they were basically smearing a whole host of bacteria all over their faces, with a healthy dose of lead just in case that wasn’t bad enough.

Want to stay safe? Make sure your makeup is name-brand, as these products must undergo rigorous testing.

2. Bathroom hand dryers

Of course, the best way to avoid poop is to wash your hands — a lot. But, um, maybe you should avoid using the hand dryers in public bathrooms when you do. While the machines help cut down on paper waste, they’re spreading other waste — literally.

According to new research, the high-powered blowers are making all sorts of material go airborne, including “feces flakes.” Even worse, that bacteria then spreads throughout the building. Researchers suggest using HEPA filters or constructing bathrooms that separate sink rooms from toilets.

3. Boat-filled bodies of water

Everyone loves a day at the beach, right? Well, be sure to think about how many boats are coming in and out of your dock — and whether or not they have bathrooms. At some point, those boats will need to dispose of their waste, and some simply dump where they dock. The problem was so bad in one Florida city that they were forced to cancel an annual boat race. The water simply contained too much fecal matter.

“[T]he water quality down there is pretty crappy,” said one race sponsor, apparently not getting his own pun. City officials are now looking to pass an ordinance banning overnight docking in the hopes that they can return the bacteria level to a less toxic level.

If you own a boat, release your waste responsibly in the appropriate location. And if you swim, be sure to shower after. You never know how “crappy” your favorite water hole might be.

4. Mount Everest

Is climbing Mount Everest your dream? You’re not the only one. And unfortunately, all these hopeful mountaineers have left a lot of trash in their wake as they’ve attempted to scale the famed peak. According to the Washington Post, human excrement has built up to an alarming level:

This week, Ang Tshering, president of Nepal Mountaineering Association, warned that pollution — particularly human waste — has reached critical levels and threatens to spread disease on the world’s highest peak. At base camp, the Associated Press reported, climbers have access to toilet tents with drums that are carried to lower areas and properly disposed once they are full. “Climbers usually dig holes in the snow for their toilet use and leave the human waste there,” Tshering told the AP, noting that the waste has been “piling up” for years around the four camps, where climbers spend weeks acclimatizing to the high altitude without access to toilets.

The Nepali government is now requiring climbers to bring 18 pounds of trash back down the mountain with them when they return.

Photo Credit: Mari Partyka/Unsplash

81 comments

Sarah Hill
Sarah Hill2 months ago

I hate those hand dryers!

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christine s
christine s3 months ago

Too much information maybe ?.

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Leo Custer
Leo C3 months ago

Thank you for sharing!

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silja salonen
silja salonen3 months ago

that is what we do ... eat and shit then eat more then shit more.

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Laura R
Laura R3 months ago

Thanks.

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Amanda M
Amanda McConnell3 months ago

thanks for sharing

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Amanda M
Amanda McConnell3 months ago

thanks for sharing

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Callie R
Callie R3 months ago

Thank you.

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Camilla V
Camilla Vaga3 months ago

i really dont wanna know

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Brandy S
Brandy S3 months ago

Thank you.

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