A charter school in Santa Ana is getting creative in its battle against COVID-19 by assembling antimicrobial LED lights inside its school buses.
The light, developed by Vyv—a company that specializes in health-tech solutions—used their state-of-the-art technology in an effort to protect students from viruses as they return to in-person schooling. The lights were installed in the roof of two Vista Heritage Global Academy school buses, which transports hundreds of students per day.
“I wanted to see how we could start to implement this, even if it was baby steps, and so we looked into our buses as a way that we could begin to work with this type of new technology,” Dr. Collin Felch, Principal of Vista Heritage Global Academy told The Epoch Times.
“Also, multiple kids are using the buses every single day, so we also knew that that was an area of potential concern especially when it comes to safety and even parent concern with students returning to campus and things like that,” Felch said.
Vyv’s technology is unique compared to other sanitizing lights since it is a non-ultraviolent light, meaning it can be on continuously around people with no exposure limits unlike traditional UV lights.
“Because they are able to be used continuously 24/7 around people, plants, animals, and equipment with no degradative effect whatsoever, the true benefit of our technology is the fact that we provide a continuous antimicrobial impact,” Kristin May, Chief Commercial Operations Officer for Vyv told The Epoch Times.
May said having a “consistent impact” is important due to how quickly microbes can regrow.
The antimicrobial lights are being implemented across other industries as well, with lights installed in some of Delta Airlines’ 757 lavatories and Denver Public School’s fleet of 325 school buses.
Vista Heritage is the first primary school in California to use the technology, something it afforded through The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act dollars.
While the lights protect against a host of viruses, they have been tested to specifically inactivate SAR-COV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, on both surfaces and liquids.
May said the lights are also helpful because aside from sanitizing surfaces, they also function as a bright white light, instead of purple or other colors that other sanitizing lights use.
“We’ve been able to do this with a white light, so take your standard light that [people] are used to, ours looks, feels, and acts exactly the same,” May said. “So, it’s providing you with that great illumination that is also needed for productivity and safety, but it’s also providing that antimicrobial protection at the same time.”
May said the best part is that “children walking onto the buses will not notice any difference,” but that :they will be coming onto a dramatically safer bus, which should give parents a better piece of mind.”
After speaking to parents, bus drivers, and all other stakeholders, everyone was on board with the idea, Felch said. Right now, the school is considering adding the lights inside the physical buildings as well.
Drew Van Voorhis is a California-based daily news reporter for The Epoch Times. He has been a journalist for four years, during which time he has broken several viral national news stories and has been interviewed for his work on both radio and internet shows.