A Rags To Rashes Story

, , , , | Healthy | March 12, 2019

My dad likes to share this story of when he worked in a science lab.

There were massive security protocols in place for everything, but one day, a pile of what looked like rags was left in a high-traffic area. People were basically forced to step on the rags to walk through. Nobody seemed to be paying attention to them, or be concerned that they were just lying there.

My dad saw them when he arrived for the day and was finally the one who followed protocol and called it in.

Apparently, the response was something to behold. The lab was shut down. Nobody in the entire lab facility was allowed to leave until they went through thorough decontamination; since it was a high-traffic area, basically everyone had to be considered “exposed” to… whatever it was. Their clothes and shoes were confiscated. People in Hazmat suits came, collected the rags, shut down the wing for decontamination, and left everyone sitting around for hours, unable to do anything or leave.

At the end of the day, an all-clear was given: “We’ve determined that there’s no contamination or exposure from the rags. However, if anyone develops a fungus-like infection or rash, please report it immediately.”

My dad commented, “That’s so comforting to hear.”

The entire staff got to be dragged in for a refresher on safety protocols and “why we don’t just walk through a potential contamination hazard.”

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