NORTHPORT, NY – Maintenance workers who have previously used a drain coil may be familiar with the drip that occurs after cleaning a pipe or toilet. Two men come up with a possible solution they call a “snake trap”.
Robert Lauth, a native of Northport and a 15-year-old maintenance mechanic at Huntington Hospital, and Robert Dapaah, 49, of Hauppauge, are the men behind the project.
“The snake trap is a sanitary PPE,” the project’s tagline, Lauth, 43, told Patch.
The snake trap would cover plumbing tools used in hospitals, schools, nursing homes, hotels, and homes. Once the drain coil has gone into a toilet or sink and the job is done, the tool is wrapped in its trap. The snake trap with the dirty snake inside would then be returned to its storage location without sewage dripping in elevators, on a staircase or in the halls.
“The current state of use is to be used [the snakes]Get her out of sight as quickly as possible and stop talking about her until another toilet is secured, “Lauth said.” On the way to the closet it is in, it drips potentially harmful, gross fecal matter through public spaces. Which, of course, isn’t ideal even before the pandemic. “
According to Lauth, the idea was patented, successfully tested in several Northwell hospitals, and received a $ 5,000 grant from the Stony Brook Small Business Development Center – the maximum it awards.
Robert Harrison, a management consultant at the Stony Brook Small Business Development Center, said he consulted with Lauth and Dapaah and suggested applying for them at the Stony Brook Manufacturing Technology Resource Consortium’s research and development park, led by program manager Cynthia Colon. The feasibility study, prototype and process improvement grant (FPP) are designed to help entrepreneurs overcome initial development barriers. Harrison said FPP applications will be evaluated based on the potential benefits and needs of the invention.
“The snake trap is an important step in improving environmental performance by reducing the drop of waste between the maintenance department and the cleaning site,” Harrison said via email. “Hospital Acquired Infections (HAIs) are a major reduction focus for the Joint Commission that evaluates hospital cleanliness.”
Lauth said that he and Dapaah are trying to get a mandate that anything that makes direct contact with waste pipes in public spaces must be covered or maintained in a certain way.
According to Lauth, around 500 surveys were completed.
“Almost uniformly, everyone agrees that these things should be covered,” he said.