While most laundromats are closed in Level 4, Mangawhai Laundry has remained open thanks, in part, to an innovative anti-Covid gun that disperses disinfectant.
Owner John Fredrickson sought out the disinfecting device after seeing it on television, where it was being used by Air New Zealand staff for “deep cleans” of aircraft. He found that to buy one in New Zealand would cost more than $1000 so he imported 10 and sold the remainder on the Wellsford Buy & Sell page for $380.
He says the gun creates a fog of disinfectant in a room, which eventually settles onto surfaces.
It has a jar attachment, which he fills with high strength disinfectant and water at a ratio of 20:1.
John did his research and found the devices were originally marketed as “hair moisturisers” but have found a new life amid the global pandemic.
Mangawhai Laundry staff use the gun in the store each day and it has made the task of disinfecting significantly more efficient.
John is a “laundromat consultant” and has had a hand in setting up a lot laundromats in the north.
Laundromats were not originally classed as essential in the first Level 4 lockdown, but John and his clients lobbied the Government to allow them to open if they had a self-service operation.
The Mangawhai Laundry has a high-tech system that allows people to load money onto cards, similar to Hop Cards used on Auckland buses, which can be swiped to pay for a load of laundry.
Although laundromats are an essential service, most in north Rodney have either chosen to close or do not meet self-service requirements.
There are no laundromats open in the Warkworth area.
Bright Laundry in Wellsford is open with a full self-service operation. It has coin operated machines and soap dispenser as well as a machine that exchanges notes for coins.