From rollercoaster to restaurant

6th of November 2018
From rollercoaster to restaurant

German correspondent Alexandra Lachner on the cleaning of the country’s largest theme park.

To understand what a huge demand for cleaning there is in the Europa Park in Rust, we need only to think about the sanitary installations.  With 5.6 million visitors recorded in 2017, the team reporting to Heidi Schmidt, manager of cleaning services, registered 20,000 visits to the toilet each day.

“We have 40 public facilities with 500 toilets, 210 urinals, 400 washbasins, 30 disabled WCs and 15 baby changing rooms.  During the day there are around 50 employees making sure that everything is kept clean and that sanitary products are regularly replenished.” A service provider is engaged to look after the routine cleaning which is carried out each morning before the park opens.

Cleaning activities are generally divided into those which are undertaken outside visitor time and those which have to be integrated into the daily routine – without inconveniencing the visitors. “We have around 30 sweepers who cover their designated areas between 07.00 and 09.00 with battery-powered blowers and blow all the debris lying around into the centre of the paths.

Mechanical sweepers then come along and sweep up the rubbish and dirt.”  In addition all the public roads, paths and open spaces in the park are washed each morning with steam jets, high pressure cleaners and wet sweepers and the water is vacuumed away afterwards.

During the day there are 40 litter-pickers patrolling the park until it closes, constantly walking their designated routes and picking up anything which visitors dispose of without using the waste bins, for example cigarette butts or drinks cups. Their job also involves dusting the lights, removing spiders’ webs or emptying ashtrays. The cleaners’ team leaders are also out and about in the park all day long, regularly checking to make sure that everything is in order and that nothing has been overlooked in one place or another. “The restaurants are in charge of their own daily cleaning, but with advice from us,” explains Schmidt.

A further important aspect is the number of attractions in the park which must always be kept in immaculate condition. From the queuing areas and stations to the boats and trains on the rides, a considerable amount of cleaning needs to be done on a daily basis, including the removal of chewing gum. Rides involving water need more extensive care, including the removal of limescale deposits and the application of protective wax.

Visitor experience

“In addition, we have a special programme for cleaning the supports and rails of our attractions”, explains Christian Hirt, technical director operation and service. “As and when needed we work with cherry pickers or, for example when cleaning the Silver Star, with industrial climbers. The climbers abseil down from the top of the supports and remove traces of airborne contaminants and weathering or bird droppings from the struts as they go. With rides involving water there may also be verdigris, algae and calcification to remove.”

One thing is clear: in ensuring the thousands of visitors each day can enjoy their visit to the Europa Park in Rust, the cleaning operations behind the scenes play an integral part in this success. “The satisfaction of our guests depends on whether they are greeted with a clean environment. As with everywhere else, cleanliness usually only becomes an issue if some detail or other isn’t right – we focus all our efforts on ensuring this doesn’t happen!” says Schmidt.


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