A CHEAP spray that costs pennies and can kill viruses instantly could help the UK beat the coronavirus, it has been claimed.
Hypochlorous acid – known more widely as HOCl – has already been used to disinfect the front line workers in South Korea.
⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates
The substance is applied by a spray or fogger and tunnels resembling airport scanners that people can walk through and have become a common site in parts of the world.
They have a pressure pad on the floor that triggers a fine mist of HOCl as people walk through.
Darren Reynolds, professor in Health and Environment at the University of the West of England, in Bristol, has been trying to persuade the Government to use HOCl in the fight against Covid-19.
He told the Daily Mail he got as far as making contact with the relevant office at the Department of Health and suggested HOCl could be made cheaply and in vast quantities but it came to nothing.
“We should have used HOCl from the very start. It would have made a huge difference – but it’s still not too late,” he said.
“There seems to be an inherent resistance to new ideas. Our inability to respond quickly to innovation is deeply frustrating.”
In the UK a company called Trimite distributes sanitising fogging tunnels under the name of ShieldMe.
“The potential of fogging with hypochlorous acid is huge,” said company chairman David Roberts.
“We are currently in discussions with some Premiership rugby and football clubs – and we think our three-man tunnels are the solution for bringing spectators back into stadiums.
“There will be some queuing but it will take no longer to walk through a fogging tunnel than it will to go through a turnstyle where you have to show your ticket.”
Mr Roberts has tried approaching the NHS about installing fogging tunnels at the entrances to hospitals but without success.
Tania Wedin, a trustee of the HOCl Trust charity, set up in 2016 to inform and educate the public about the benefits of hypochlorous acid, said its use is key any second wave pandemic
“The NHS now has a duty to have the necessary testing done and routinely use HOCl,” she said.
“Then, should a second wave be apparent, or a future pandemic, HOCl will be immediately available for frontline key workers to protect themselves, saving the NHS money, and, more importantly, reducing the cost in lives.”