The spray being used to disinfect the streets of the UAE poses no danger to the public nor the environment, an official has said.
Dawoud Al Hajri, director general of Dubai Municipality, said the spray contains diluted hydrogen peroxide, which is typically used as a mild disinfectant on cuts and burns and can be used as a mouth rinse.
The potency of the spray being used in the streets was rigorously tested and declared safe to use publicly, he said.
“All sanitation products used in the campaign contain active ingredients and are approved by the US Environmental Protection Agency and the Antimicrobial Chemicals Centre, and are recommended for sterilisation by the World Health Organisation,” said Mr Al Hajri.
The disinfection and sterilisation products contain chemical ingredients but vary in the concentration of active substances.
Disinfection procedures have been carried out by a special team of experts with a strong focus on public safety, he said.
Specialised teams deployed vehicles and other equipment for spraying and disinfection. These included vehicles mounted with spraying devices that compress the disinfection fluid into small particles, portable sprays that operate with hydraulic retail power, and fumigation machines.
The UAE began a nationwide disinfection campaign on March 26. Streets and public areas are sprayed daily between 8pm and 6am. During that time, the public are to remain in their homes unless absolutely necessary - at risk of hefty fines. The campaign ends on April 4.
In Abu Dhabi, the sanitisation drive is being carried out by Tadweer, the emirate's waste management company.
"The sanitisers are environment-friendly and have very low concentration [of chemicals]," Dr Salem Al Kaabi, the company's general manager told The National.
Officials also said the chemicals posed no danger to animals, including pets and street cats.
“The substances have been carefully picked to not impose any side effects, and they are even recommended for use at foodstuff stores and are approved by EPA [The Environmental Protection Agency], said Mohamed AlMarzouqi, director of Tadweer’s Pest Control Projects Department..
“So they are very safe."