Massachusetts PROs Saw a Need and Filled It

M.A. Frazier built its own hand-wash stations to meet COVID-19 demand

Massachusetts PROs Saw a Need and Filled It

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M.A. Frazier of Wellfleet, Massachusetts, has served the portable restroom market in Cape Cod for more than 30 years. Typically, two dozen Tuff-Jon sinks from The T.S.F. Company provided enough stock to serve local event rental clients. 

Construction clients typically relied on sinks inside portable restrooms. The COVID-19 pandemic changed the market immediately. With the enormous demand generated by concerns over the coronavirus, the company suddenly received requests from construction clients for the first time, with some clients asking for four hand-wash stations per job site.

“When I picked up the phone in March 2020 to order additional hand-wash stations, I was told I was a little bit late to the party,” says owner Matt Frazier. “The units were either sold out or on back order across the country.”

Municipal clients also began to ask for larger numbers of hand-wash stations. Unable to meet local demand, he decided to innovate by transforming portable restroom units into hand-wash stations. While typical event rentals lasted a day or two, Frazier reckoned that hand-wash stations left outdoors on long-term rentals would be subject to rainwater that might fill up sinks and cause the units to overflow. Instead, he opted for a “sheltered” concept. 

“We pushed some big welding and fabrication projects in our shops aside and started with a dozen portable restroom units and removed the urinals and the toilet paper dispensers,” he says.  “We replaced those with a 22-gallon horizontal freshwater holding tank that could provide water for at least a day, and added soap and paper towel dispensers on the wall.”

Frazier then built stainless steel shelves to accommodate a 13-by-8-inch sink, added a foot-operated pump on the floor, and plumbed it up with a check valve.

Ultimately, the company converted 300 restroom units into hand-wash stations, which were quickly rented, many on long-term contracts. He’s also converted a few restrooms belonging to neighboring PROs to help them meet their own demand.

The company recently developed an indoor hand-wash station to meet demand from banks, schools, health care providers, institutional customers and film production companies. The new units are built using a converted 64-gallon trash tote.

“Our service people couldn’t have reached inside hand-wash stations with their truck hoses,” Frazier says. “But the trash tote already has wheels, so it’s easy to move in and out of buildings, even outfitted with a large water tank or full of graywater. We just wheel them out to the truck for service, replace the soap and paper towels, secure the lid and roll them back.”  

Read more about M.A. Frazier in this month’s issue of Portable Restroom Operator magazine.


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