Hawthorne Garage owner Dan Palmer and SanitiseMen owner Gerard Murtagh. Picture: Supplied
Hawthorne Garage owner Dan Palmer and SanitiseMen owner Gerard Murtagh. Picture: Supplied

QLDers told: ‘The risk of the second wave is real’

A QUEENSLAND businessman says what 9/11 was to global security COVID-19 will be to how we think about the threat of pandemics.

Gerard Murtagh launched SanitiseMen when the coronavirus hit, and used the same model - properly equipped and trained people in vans - as his businesses MouldMen and PestMen.

"We realised the world had changed," he said.

"Similar to the way security changed in the aftermath of 9/11, COVID-19 will change the way we interact with each other and how we interact in the buildings we enter.


"The threat that a virus can shut the world down, like it has, is too great and we need to have practices in place to stop cross-contamination."

The Gold Coast business owner said in the past six weeks he had hired four new staff and completed more than 20 jobs and had just secured a major, but confidential, contract.

"We're seeing the larger players, the supermarkets, shopping centres and schools, coming on board, now they understand this is what they have to do to get people back in the building," he said.

"Even though we're flattening the curve, the risk of the second wave coming is real.

"That's a real threat to us and all the hard work we've done can be undone if we get large clusters coming from a restaurant or a school."

He said right now he was seeing clients converting from inquiries to bookings as people went back to work and school.

"We have the best product on the market, we believe, it's not a chemical - it's a microbial solution … It is eco-friendly, it's food safe, it's non-toxic," he said.

He said it not only killed the virus but created a barrier against it for 30 days.

Mr Murtagh assured customers it had been tested against a surrogate coronavirus in February and found to kill it.

"The Therapeutic Goods Administration have approved that testing as a form of claim that we can kill COVID-19," he said.

He said our cities would go back to normal but "it's going to be a new normal".

"The new normal is going to be making sure we protect ourselves at all times and stopping contamination and stopping the spread."

One of Mr Murtagh's first Brisbane clients was at the supermarket and fresh produce store Hawthorne Garage.

Owner Dan Palmer said it was an essential service and open every day so sanitising the store was "a vital step" to protect staff and customers and reduce the risk of spread.

"Using the world's best virus-killing sanitiser provides an extra layer of defence and it only has to be reapplied once a month," he said.

"We are in uncharted waters so employing SanitiseMen to apply Zoono means as a food retailer we're doing everything we can to make our staff and customers safe.

"It certainly helps put our minds at rest."

Originally published as QLDers told: 'The risk of the second wave is real'