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Staying in a Chinese Hotel? Be Careful, the Linens Could Be Dangerous

Posted: 08/28/2014 3:20 pm

underground laundry dalian undercoverIt’s the most basic requirement when staying at a hotel: a nice, comfy bed to sleep in. The bed may be hard and it may be small, but there’s one thing that is not debatable: the bed must be clean.

Unfortunately, that is frequently not the case. Some hotels have tried to cut corners by enlisting the use of underground, non-certified laundromats to help them wash their linen. CCTV, the state-run broadcaster, went undercover in the dark world of hotel laundry and found these underground laundromats operate in unhygienic conditions and use chemical compounds so harsh they could be dangerous to the unlucky people who use them.

A reporter used a hidden camera to document a visit to one such facility in Dalian. The reporter said there were no signs or identifying features out front that marked the building as home to a laundromat. When he walked inside, he saw piles of laundry strewn all over the floor, with dirty water running throughout parts of the factory.

underground laundry dalian undercover

A closer look at the operations of the underground laundry showed numerous health and safety infractions. There were unmarked vats next to the washing machines containing white powder, later revealed to be strong acids and sodas used to clean the laundry.

These compounds include hydrogen peroxide, sodium hypoclorite, oxalic acid, and caustic soda, according to an industry insider who wanted to remain anonymous. He confirmed use of the dangerous chemicals is common.

underground laundry dalian undercover

An industry insider spoke said the powerful chemicals makes his job a lot easier:

It holds strong acids and bases along with strong bleaches; using these makes for easy washing done fast. In order to clean faster for whiter whites, these compounds are required. It’s awesome using these things; we (the workers) feel as though we’re using a nuclear bomb.

The compounds are not used in conjunction with any neutralizing agent to counteract their potency. Direct contact with skin from some of these compounds can lead to itching, reddening, or even an allergic reaction.

underground laundry dalian undercover

If your skin doesn’t come into contact with harsh chemicals while in a hotel, it could come into contact with dirty laundry instead. The reporter found some items aren’t cleaned at all; if it looks clean and is white, it’s simply ironed and repackaged.

Another practice is to indiscriminately mix laundry taken from a hospital with those taken from a hotel and wash them all together.

Those inside the facility say these practices are to make sure the laundry is as white as it can be, while cleanliness comes second.

underground laundry dalian undercoverunderground laundry dalian undercover

Photos: CCTV News

h/t @MissXQ


Woman Releases Cobras Into Shenzhen Park, Gets Eviscerated Online

Posted: 08/13/2014 8:00 am

live poisonous snake release shenzhen animal rightsThe release of a number of poisonous snakes by a Shenzhen woman has incurred the wrath of a number of netizens.

The woman in question posted nine pictures to her Weibo account (@郎卡卓玛) back on July 14, reports the Nandu. One of the photographs show her releasing rattlesnakes and cobras into what many netizens suspected to be a public park. The text accompanying the photo reads:

You should praise us beautiful girls and handsome boys for releasing these live snakes. The poisonous ones were all released by her. Such bravery [thumbsup.emo]

Almost a month later, the unidentified woman’s Weibo account has become very busy as a wave of netizens have come to criticize her. Yesterday at around 4pm, her posts had been forwarded some 7000 times as the outrage against her grew. Some Weibo verified users even got involved by saying that the release of poisonous snakes is a public issue.

However, the precise location of where the photographs were taken have not been verified, fueling netizen speculation. Furthermore, requests for an interview with a reporter have gone unanswered, leaving any facts to this story unconfirmed, such as whether the woman is an animal rights activist or simply someone with a grudge.

Following the outcry from netizens, the woman tried to delete her Weibo account. Later, she tried to change her name, and then later still the woman made a statement in which she apologized for her actions:

Today I have made everyone very annoyed because of myself, to which I want to express how sorry I am to all of you! However, I didn’t release poisonous snakes into a public park as everyone claims; instead, we released these animals back into the natural world. All living things are equal. These animals come from nature, and so we have let these animals go back to nature! The deletion of Weibo content was to disallow the pointless attacks that kept being made. We treat Weibo as a diary, and so with that we invite everyone to stop their speculation.

Shenzhen Police and Shenzhen Public Parks are investigating.

Southern China is home to 35 types of snakes that are venomous. These include the Chinese cobra, the king cobra, Fea’s viper, and Russell’s viper.

Annual records of snake bite fatalities in China range from 450 to over 4,000, an amount that is dwarfed by snake bite fatalities in India, Bangladesh and some African countries.

Snake bites most commonly occur in rural farming communities where workers use manual agricultural tools and walk barefoot. Unfortunately, these are also communities where access to healthcare is often limited.

live poisonous snake release animal rights


Photos: Sina News Video

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