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Local Judge: Courtrooms Safer Than Ever With New Air Disinfection System

 Aerobiotix President Dr. David Kirschman shows reporters a filter from the ILLUVIA 500 UV machine during a demonstration yesterday at the courthouse. Judge Steve Dankoff watches on the left.
Chris Welter
/
WYSO
Aerobiotix President Dr. David Kirschman shows reporters a filter from the ILLUVIA 500 UV machine during a demonstration yesterday at the courthouse. Judge Steve Dankoff watches on the left.

The Montgomery County Common Pleas Court is set to resume jury trials for criminal cases later this month.

The court has increased cleaning, mandated people wear masks, and installed plexiglass dividers to try to keep people safe. And now, using federal CARES Acts funds, they’ve bought seven new portable ILLUVIA 500 UV machines from the Aerobiotix company. The new machines pull in air from a room and pass it through ultraviolet rays to kill the bacteria and viruses that are floating inside—viruses like COVID-19.

Montgomery County Judge Steve Dankof, who will be using the machines in his courtroom, says:

“I do honestly, genuinely feel that a juror that comes in to the Montgomery County Court, or a witness for a hearing, is certainly safer now from viruses and bacteria than they've ever been in the history of our courthouse.”

Since the machine works continuously, Judge Dankoff says it will be safer for people to stay in the courtroom for longer periods of time — like a jury does during a trial. Aerobiotix, which is based in Miamisburg, also sells to healthcare organizations, and says their machine eliminates 100 percent of viruses that pass through it, which would reduce the room’s overall viral load. The Montgomery County Courtroom will be one of the first non-medical facilities to use these machines.

Environmental reporter Chris Welter is a corps member with Report for America, a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms.