Dave Carroll broke down in tears yesterday as he recounted his remarkable escape from a service station toilets on the M40 near Banbury – after 12 years stuck trying to wash his hands. The ‘dirty dozen’ was caused by so-called automatic taps that simply failed to work when the 45-year-old father of two rubbed his germ-ridden hands near the sensors.
‘At first it was a bit of a laugh,’ sobbed Carroll, from Stockport. ‘The taps seemed to work for other people and yet simply would not gush for me. After a while I thought it must be something wrong with my hands – your mind plays tricks on you. And all the while those signs saying “Now wash your hands please” were plunging me into terrible guilt trips.’
Carroll became stranded when his phone battery died, thereby cutting him off from civilisation and any possible dreams of escape. ‘It was a living hell,’ he recalled. ‘I ended up drinking from the urinals and eating those pineapple chunks. But the worst part was seeing people come and go, happily washing their hands after a tinkle.’
Supervisors at the service station likened Carroll’s plight to that of Tom Hanks’ character in average movie The Terminal ‘In the movie, Hanks fell in love with Catherine Zeta Jones and that ultimately saved him,’ said rest room executive Barry Shinwell. ‘But there are no women in the gents, despite what you may read on the inside of the cubicle doors.’
Carroll was finally saved from his in-convenience when a truck driver accidentally left the shower running after his morning ablutions. ‘Being able to wash my hands after 12 years trapped in the toilets and walk out a free man is something I will never forget,’ he said. ‘The services have even said they will waive the parking fee, so this is the best day of my life.’