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21

Project log

Johan F.M. Molenbroek
added a research item
Background: The train toilet can form a barrier for those wishing to travel by train as it is perceived as being dirty, and therefore its use as being unpleasant. In addition, Dutch train toilet users have the additional issue of storing their hand luggage in the toilet's confined spaceOBJECTIVE:In this article, we examine the issue of Dutch travelers with hand luggage in relation to their use of train toilets. We investigate the type of hand luggage train travelers have with them and lastly, we study what travelers do with their hand luggage when using the toilet. Methods: As part of an overarching study, we asked two specific questions on what travelers do with their hand luggage in a train toilet environment, followed by 22 observations from observational research. Results: In the questionnaire, train travelers reported that bringing hand luggage into the train toilet is a problem because of the lack of storage space, and their fear of losing their seat. From the observational research, we noted that the participants mainly held their hand luggage on their bodies, and to a lesser extent, they placed it on the floor of the train toilet itself. None of the 22 participants used the hook to hang up their bag and/ or their coat. Conclusions: Travelers need a facility in the train toilet to store their hand luggage. Women have a stronger need for this than men, as they almost always carry an item with them. In addition, they use the toilet in hovering position or seated, with their backs to the wall, so they have limited space to store hand luggage on their backs or shoulders as men do. Most participants kept their hand luggage at a distance from the bowl, and the majority kept it off the floor (14 of the 22) because they were aware of the hygiene. The positioning of the coat/luggage hook at 1840 mm above the floor was considered to be too high, out of people's comfort area.
Johan F.M. Molenbroek
added a research item
Train toilets are perceived to be dirty and as a consequence train travelers rate the toilet as insufficient. While the train toilet is mainly used to urinate it is for men impossible to keep the train toilet clean without spilling urine outside the bowl while standing. This causes women to hover while urinating and as a result they add to the soiling of the train toilet, by spilling drips over the seat. A 'hygienic train toilet' will make train travel more attractive, and it can remove one of the obstacles to travelling by train, particularly for the elderly and families with young children. A possible solution to improve hygiene in the train toilet is splitting its interior based on the posture while urinating. Accordingly, a toilet with two modules was designed: One for urinating standing and the other for the seated or hovered toilet use which was 'inclusively designed', thus the interior is enhanced with adaptations such as toddler platforms, a diaper changing table, extra support and enough space for wheel-chair manipulation. The observation and questionnaire both with 26 users of 3-68 years old (some wheel chair users) showed that the mock-up of the train toilet indirectly scored a 7.1 on a 10 point scale (1= very bad, 10= very good), but there is room for improvement, for instance a sanitary waste bin, an extra support bar on the left side of the toilet and a toddler platform under the urinal were lacking.