Ozonated water to disinfect schools, is it dangerous for health?

Ozonated water to disinfect schools, is it dangerous for health?

In some Toulouse schools, “classic” household products have been replaced by ozonated water. What is this ? Is it safe for children’s health? TipsForWomens answers you.

Between 2014 and 2026, a total of more than half a billion € will have been devoted to our schools as part of our Multiannual Investment Programs“wrote on X (formerly Twitter), Jean-Luc Moudenc, the mayor of Toulouse. This year, the start of the school year is placed under the sign of ecology. Indeed, household products are gradually being replaced by ozonated water . What is it about ?

Ozonated water, an alternative to chemical household products

The National Agency for Food and Environmental Health Safety (ANSES) was interested in chemical disinfection alternatives in 2015. In her report, she mentioned ozonated water. Ozone, a gas made up of 3 oxygen atoms, is injected into a cold water bath which rotates in a closed circuit, this creates ozonated water. Still according to the agency, it is a powerful oxidant that can destroy bacteria, yeasts, molds, viruses, parasites, odors, etc. It is this method that has been chosen by the town hall of Toulouse to disinfect and clean certain schools in the city. A decision hailed by Marion Lalane de Labaudère, Deputy Mayor of Toulouse in charge of Education and Policy.

Ozonated water considered more respectful of the environment, and health?

According to the ANSES report, ozonated water is more effective than chlorine and provides a very broad antibacterial spectrum. The advantage? It is a molecule that quickly decomposes into oxygen after use without leaving any by-products. On the other hand, the product is “controversial from an operator safety point of view” and a toxicity threshold of 0.05 ppm (0.05 mg/L) must be respected in order to avoid certain harmful effects such as:

  • Headache,
  • Sore throat,
  • Nose or eye irritation.

On the other hand, chronic exposure can cause pulmonary and respiratory problems such as atrophy of the alveolar walls, fibrosis, bronchopathy, dyspnoea. The neurological system can also be affected (headaches, memory problems, neuromuscular damage). Thus, professionals working with this product must be properly trained and must comply with the occupational exposure limits set by the INRS (National Institute for Research and Safety).

Rest assured, this cleaning process is already in force in many hospitals, in offices, but also in some restaurants.