TribLIVE

| USWorld


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

China decides to grade its stinky restrooms

Daily Photo Galleries

By USA Today
Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, 9:09 p.m.
 

BEIJING — Want a job? In China you can apply to become a “stink assessor” for the country's notoriously noxious public restrooms.

Applicants for such a position should be younger than 30, have no history of nasal disease and avoid tobacco, pungent food and drink before and during the assessment, the country's ministry of health announced last week.

Wang Gang, who is 50 and a heavy smoker, was ready to offer an opinion about a neighborhood restroom. He classified the facility as hitting the fourth and worst stench level — “intense foul smell” — on draft standards for restrooms nationwide.

The rules —issued on Thursday for public feedback before they are enforced — specify the number of flies permitted: three per square meter in a stand-alone toilet and just one per square meter in a toilet room inside another building. As for maggots — zero tolerance.

Communist authorities value statistics, and the classification and precise targets attracted ridicule on Friday online in China, along with disbelief that the standards could be enforced. But there is little doubt they are needed.

Despite clear improvement in Beijing's facilities for the 2008 Olympics, Wang's local restroom has two holes in the ground without a partition, and there are no wash basins.

“It's better than before, but the bathroom is very over-used as there are few in this neighborhood, so it's very smelly,” said Wang in Lishi Hutong, an alley of one-story structures in Beijing's historic heart, where many families lack their own bathrooms.

 

 
 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Nation

  1. Cathedral may host slave trade museum
  2. Fewer adults smoking, U.S. survey finds
  3. McCarthy-era felon: Lies doomed me
  4. Justices consider social media, free speech
  5. E-cigarettes cut cravings, study finds
  6. Surge in small drones making airline pilots nervous
  7. Obama’s immigration actions neglect business pleas
  8. Boston airport’s ‘naked man’ remains behind bars
  9. Many older people silently harbor gene mutation that could start path to blood cancer
  10. House ethics panel defers campaign finance investigation of New York Rep. Grimm
  11. Former Va. Sen. Webb launches presidential exploratory committee
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.