Ruth Mitchell

Member Article

Innovative toilet design could be life-saver

A student at a North East university has designed a “toilet in a box” which he believes could offer a solution to one of the worst health hazards following a natural disaster. Northumbria University Design student, John Macdonald’s design uses wooden poles which can be easily set up, and burnt when they are no longer needed – minimising the risk of disease spreading. The design also includes canvas to form a tent around the toilet. The 22-year old final year design student won £750 for his design in the annual RSA awards scheme. He said: “My design is aimed at giving a community the tools to quickly establish an effective sanitation system and become immediately involved in setting it up. “The speed and involvement provided by this solution helps the community to feel they are beginning the journey towards some sort of normality and restores some level of privacy and dignity.’‘John did much research on the subject and talked to Oxfam and the University’s own Disaster and Development Centre before coming up with his design. He added: “Having an effective solution to removing human waste following a disaster can be as crucial as providing a safe water supply. “My idea needs much development and testing, but the concept has the potential to improve the lives of generations to come.’’

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Ruth Mitchell .

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