Everyone knows about urine-indicator dye, despite the fact that it has 100 percent never existed
If you pee in the pool, itâ€™ll go blue! Thereâ€™s a special dye in there, designed to detect urine, and itâ€™ll billow around you in a big, embarrassing, pissy cloud, and everyone will know youâ€™ve done it, and youâ€™ll be hounded out of town as a known pool-piddler.
Everybody knows that, right?
Except it isnâ€™t true. It doesnâ€™t even stand up to any scrutiny as an idea â€” what chemical specifically detects wee-wee? Would something that would react that dramatically to a dribble of micturition be safe to swim in? And if it happened, and someone was suddenly surrounded by a cerulean aura of widdly-woo, what would the protocol be for lifeguards, pool staff and fellow swimmers? If a pool had to be evacuated every time someone leaked in it, nobody would have ever completed a length. Plus, what would happen next â€” would they pour in an anti-piss substance that returned it to normal? Would they drain the pool and refill it with untainted water? (Answer:Â Highlyunlikely).
Despite being clearly nonsense, it still persists as an idea. â€œIâ€™ve heard many people suggest that thereâ€™s a chemical that will react with urine to turn a certain color,â€ says environmental engineerÂ Ernest R. â€œChipâ€ Blatchley IIIÂ of Purdue University, who has spent a lot of his career studying the chemistry of swimming pools, and has become the mediaâ€™s go-to figure when discussing people relieving themselves in the shallow end. â€œBut as far as I can tell, itâ€™s a myth. Iâ€™m not aware of any chemical thatâ€™s added to pools for this purpose.â€
â€œI think everyone who works in the pool trade has been asked about it,â€ agrees Sue Pace ofÂ H2O Swimming Pools Ltd. â€œBut unfortunately, itâ€™s a complete myth.â€