Goldshield 75, the chemical sprayed in New York City subway cars every night to protect them against COVID-19, is not approved by the EPA for such use since its effectiveness is unproven, according to a report in The City.
Though New York City Transit Authority spokesperson Shams Tarek said Goldshield "claims it's an antimicrobial against COVID-19," the company was forced in 2016 to settle a complaint by the Environmental Protection Agency that said the the company made false statements about the spray's effectiveness.
According to records obtained by The City, the settlement required the company to say Goldshield 75 "does not protect users or others against . . . disease-causing bacteria."
The company had previously been fined $21,000 and told to say on its label: "This product does not protect users or others against food-borne or disease-causing bacteria."
In a CBS-2 interview in early April, Goldshield Chief Operating Officer Brian Shlisky said, "We are now using it to cover or coat or protect the MTA subways, and subway stations, the bus depots, and now we are about to go into the buses for the entire New York City transit."
Shlisky added, the product "attaches to a surface and it has a long carbon chain, which then breaks down things like bacteria and mold mildew etc. And protect surfaces that way. It doesn't leach. So it doesn't come off services. It will continue to protect services for long-term."
But he declined to comment on past EPA actions regarding the product to The City, and he would not say how the Transit Authority came to use it. He also declined to say whether it would protect against COVID-19.
"We do not nor have we ever made claims about COVID-19 in the USA," Shlisky said.
He added, "in Europe and in Asia, we do make viral claims as their testing protocols are different than in the USA, and the core antimicrobials in those Nations (sic) are classified as bio-cides."
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