And the award for Worst Design Ever goes to: The Drip Tray Flush (see photo) common in most boys’ urinals in South Africa.
The design principle is simple and works something like this:
- A constantly running tap fills an aluminium tray with approximately 10L of water (depending on the size of the urinal - this could be more).
- Through the slight tilt of the tray, as the tray fills with water, it becomes "off-balance" and decants the water onto the face of the urinals, therefore washing the urinal and taking aways the smells.
- This process is repeated every 5 minutes, 24 hours each and every day...independent of use!!!
A rough calculation of water consumption, goes something like this:
10L of water x 5 minutes = 120L per hour
x 24 hours = 2 880L per day
x 365 days = 1 051 200L per year (1 051KL)
FINANCIAL COST: Average cost per KL of water (2015/2016), including Sewage and VAT Charges is ±R40.00/KL
ENVIRONMENTAL COST: Incalculable...!!!
Average Annual Cost of Water for one single urinal: ±R42 000.00
Now imagine some schools actually have 4 or 6 of these drip tray flush systems installed. Then imagine the hundreds of schools in Johannesburg where these systems are installed.
Truth is, 99.9% of this water is WASTE.
There really must me some common policy to eradicate this system from our schools, as a matter of priority!!!