Chemical to fight COVID now available

Keri Thornton | Daily Press

District 3 Cherokee County Commissioner Clif Hall disbursed hypochlorous acid into a disinfecting container at the Community Building.

A new hypochlorous acid dispersing machine is up and running, and free to those who need the chemical.

District 3 Cherokee County Commissioner Clif Hall said he's encouraging the public to take advantage of the free service and help stop the spread of the deadly coronavirus.

"This machine makes a safe disinfectant that can be sprayed or wiped on surfaces to kill the COVID-19 virus, along with a host of other bacteria," Hall said. "It doesn't matter who it is, whether it's from the average homeowner in town to a business. We don't care who wants it; as long as we have it in supply, we'll give it to them."

According to hypochlorousacid.com, hypochlorous acid is a weak acid that forms when chlorine dissolves in water and itself partially dissociates. The chemical forming hypochlorite - ClO, HClO and ClO - are oxidizers, and the primary disinfection agents of chlorine solutions.

"The hypochlorous acid moves quickly, able to oxidize the bacteria in a matter of seconds, while the hypochlorite ion might take up to a half hour to do the same," said hypochlorousacid.com. "Germ surfaces carry a negative electrical charge, which results in a repulsion of the negatively charged hypochlorite ion to the area of the germ surfaces, making hypochlorite ion less effective at killing germs."

The chemical is available to be dispersed Monday-Friday, 1-3 p.m. for the first few weeks.

"If we can just get it out right now, I wish we could have gotten thousands of gallons out of here by this holiday," District 2 Commissioner Mike Brown said. "That way people could have at least sprayed it around the house and killed what was there before they let everyone come in."

Hall and Brown said the best method of dispersing the chemical is to use a spray bottle to create a fine mist onto surfaces.

"We were spraying on our hands before we went into anywhere and we carried it on us," Hall said. "If you're out and about, it's as effective or more effective than hand sanitizer. The perfect spray bottle for this is the $2 peroxide bottles at Dollar General stores. They mist super-fine and we bought eight here and more in other locations."

The chemical is made at the Community Building in the same location it's given out.

"This is where your water comes in, and this is your brine tank and this is where it brines at," Hall said. "Your salt and your fresh water comes in and it's put here by hand. The machine is logged into their phones so if something goes wrong, Service Wing Organic Solutions, LCC -- the company that designed this - it'll tell them if something is wrong and it will tell our guys if something is wrong."

Hall said they can make up to 27 gallons per hour and they've already made 125 gallons.

"Pick up location is on the west side of the Community Building on College Avenue. You will need to bring your own clean container to be filled," Hall said. "This product is free to all Cherokee County residents. This will help stop the spread of this ugly and deadly virus."

Get help

To get the HOCL, call the Community Building at 918-458-0460.

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