In India, a country with one of the worst sanitation crises, the Hindu (the most respected newspaper in India), reports on a new initiative started by one of the small towns in South India to address the issue for women (women suffer the most with lack of access to toilets).
The “She Toilets”
The smart toilets will clean and sterilise their environments automatically. They have coin-operated sanitary-napkin-vending machines and an incinerator to burn used napkins. The toilets have baby stations to help mothers change the diapers of their children and Indian-style commodes.
Electronic display boards will tell users if the toilet is occupied or not. The toilet operation is remotely controlled. The smart toilets will send automatic SMS alerts to its controllers if the septic tank fills up or water supply is exhausted.
There are also security features to ensure the safety of the users. The agency has put up the “she-toilets” as most public toilets lack hygiene and pose health and safety problems to women users. The “she-toilets” have been designed keeping in mind the welfare of women commuters. They will be able to find the location of the nearest public e-toilet by searching on their mobile phones.
Sensor systems inside the toilet trigger its cleaning systems. The toilets will have washbasins, mirrors and health faucets. They will have FM radios and provisions to stop intruders.
Like everything else in India that is a public entity, I worry about the operation and maintenance, and long term use of this wonderful pilot project.