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Label the outside of the swab bag, near the bottom of the bag, with the sample identification. Tear off the top of the bag. Without touching the inside of the bag, remove the swab by using the blue handle. Swab the surface to be tested in a crosshatch pattern, pressing down on the swab to achieve good contact with the surface. Reinsert the sponge portion of the swab into the bag, hold the sponge through the bag, and twist and pull to remove the stick. Roll down the top of the bag and fold in the tabs to close. Keep swabs refrigerated, not frozen, until ready to be shipped.
Clearly label each plate to be analyzed on the bottom of the plate, not the lid. When ready to take the air sample, open the lid and expose the agar to the air. Do not touch the agar in the plate. Expose to the air for your specified time. Close the lid of the plate. When all air samples have been collected tape the plates closed to prevent them from opening during shipping. Keep air plates refrigerated until ready to be shipped.
For Water Samples:
Label the outside of the water container with the water faucet/outlet information (or other descriptive title). Turn on the water faucet or open the water outlet (depending on the source) and allow the water to run for at least one minute.
Open the water container, avoiding hand contact with the inner walls. Carefully place the open mouth of container into the water stream (do not rinse the container out first) and fill it to the marked 100ml fill line. It is important to fill the container up to the fill line to ensure accurate test results. Close the container and secure the lid. Place sample into a “WHIRL-PAK“ or other plastic re-sealable bag and close (this will ensure that the sample does not spill out into the cooler if damaged during shipping). Refrigerate samples until they are shipped.
For Ice Samples:
Label the outside of a “WHIRL-PAK” bag with the site location of the ice (or other descriptive title). Open the bag by tearing off at the perforated top portion and pulling it open using the white tabs. Avoid hand contact with the inside of the bag to prevent contamination. Using a sterile scoop, collect the ice and place it inside the “WHIRL-PAK” bag. Close the bag and keep the sample frozen until it’s shipped.