Southgate Community Schools Employs Germ-zapping Robot to Battle COVID-19

Southgate Community School District is taking extra steps to prevent the spread of germs at the Fordline Elementary School campus by employing a LightStrike Germ-Zapping Robot from Xenex Disinfection Services.
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The LightStrike Germ-Zapping Robot from Xenex Disinfection Services is being used to quickly disinfect Southgate Community Schools. // Courtesy of Xenex
The LightStrike Germ-Zapping Robot from Xenex Disinfection Services is being used to quickly disinfect Southgate Community Schools. // Courtesy of Xenex

Southgate Community School District is taking extra steps to prevent the spread of germs at the Fordline Elementary School campus by employing a LightStrike Germ-Zapping Robot from Xenex Disinfection Services.

The district recently partnered with Forefront, which provides comprehensive custodial services, for the district’s eight schools. One of the key reasons for the partnership was Forefront’s specialized experience in serving the hospital and senior living markets with environmental services and infection prevention services. Forefront serves more than 40 hospitals and senior living communities in 14 states.

“Southgate Community Schools invested in Forefront, an environmental services company with an established industry background in healthcare infection prevention,” says Sharon Irvine, superintendent of Southgate Community Schools.

“During our most recent uptick in COVID cases, Forefront brought in equipment for disinfection that was otherwise unavailable to us. It gives us a tremendous reassurance and confidence to know that we have a sanitation tool of this caliber available to us. It also gives us a sense of pride that our district is the first in Michigan to use this in support of the health and safety of our students and staff.”

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, LightStrike robots are now used in airports, schools, hotels, sports arenas, police stations and correctional facilities, convention centers, and more to quickly disinfect large rooms and areas.

Backed by more than 45 peer-reviewed studies validating their efficacy, the robots are proven to quickly kill common germs like norovirus, influenza, and MRSA, as well as deadly superbugs like Candida auris, which recently forced a specialty hospital in Detroit to stop accepting patients.

To disinfect the entire school quickly, the Forefront team used a LightStrike Germ-Zapping Robot to disinfect large spaces within the school, including classrooms, the gymnasium, cafeteria, and restrooms. In addition, they used five Deactivate devices, a high-powered, handheld disinfection tool designed to quickly destroy germs in compact areas, in the school’s smaller areas like offices and special needs areas.

“We want to do everything possible to ensure that we’re providing our customers with the cleanest environment possible. Using the LightStrike robot and Deactivate devices at Southgate Community Schools’ Fordline Elementary campus enabled us to quickly destroy germs that we can’t see, but that could potentially be transmitted to a person,” says Dan Bowen, CEO and co-founder of Forefront.

“There are a lot of UV technologies on the market, but we chose the Xenex robot because it’s proven to work quickly and backed by more than 45 peer-reviewed studies validating its efficacy. The devices work fast, are easy to use, don’t leave behind a residue like most chemical disinfectants or sprayers, and won’t damage materials or equipment like UV devices using low intensity mercury bulbs.”

The robots emit high intensity bursts of broad spectrum ultraviolet (UV) light proven to deactivate greater than 99.99 percent of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), the virus that causes COVID-19, in 2 minutes at 1 meter. Different pathogens are susceptible to UV light at different wavelengths. With bursts of broad-spectrum UV light generated by a pulsed xenon lamp, LightStrike robots quickly deactivate viruses and bacteria where they are most vulnerable.

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