I’m going to run some ideas past readers. These are thoughts of what works in the real world against viral and bacterial contaminants.

I think the cars of the near future could be updated with a sterilization set-up. The first thing I’d like to see is an ultraviolet light that comes on when the car is shut off and unoccupied. UV lights could be placed in strategic places, such as over the seating, controls and other areas passengers touch or cough over. The lights would be timed so they would greatly diminish any residual viruses on these surfaces. The software in one of the computer modules could have varying exposure routines that accommodate the number of riders. The HVAC system filters could be made into HEPA filters by mandate. Air samples would be monitored and appropriate UV light cycles would give just enough rays to solve any disease spreading issues. The system would have a fail-safe to prevent it coming on when occupied.

Another layer of purification/disinfection would involve actual air treatment by treated HEPA filters. These filters would have to be regularly replaced with new filters on an annual basis, or more frequently, if your passengers include sniffling children.

The next idea involves an atomized form of disinfectant sprayed throughout the car interior. Once again, I believe the system could prove extremely safe, since it would deploy only after the vehicle is unoccupied. Sensors could regulate how often application is required. Also, since we have a president wondering aloud if taking/using antiseptics internally would help, consumer safety for this not happening would be priority 1.

This is all future-speak. For now wear a mask, clean/disinfect surfaces you touch regularly. Several times a week wouldn’t hurt. Keep rubbing alcohol or bleach-type wipes handy. Use them to spot-clean when necessary. The future will make this safer, but for now, it’s your job.

Craig Crabill is an ASE master auto and heavy-truck technician.  He has owned a repair business for more than 40 years. He currently is contracted with four school bus fleets in the area.