Residents of Hamburg, Germany, are pissed off about people pissing on buildings in the party quarter known as St. Pauli, so they’re doing something about it – coating some of the walls with a water-repelling coating that can repel and reflect attempts at urination.
According to Discovery News, citizens there sprayed some of the walls with Ultra Every Dry, a hydrophobic coating that can effectively “pee back” on somebody trying to relieve themselves in public. Warning signs were also posted in the hopes that it will cut down on the behavior.
However, as officials told the website, not all of the liquid-repelling walls are clearly marked, meaning that would-be offenders shouldn’t assume that they’re safe if there are no warning signs posted. Otherwise, they could wind up on the wrong end of a rather unpleasant surprise.
“This paint job sends a direct message back to perpetrators that their wild urinating on this wall is not welcome,” group organizer Julia Staron told Reuters. “The paint protects the buildings and the residents and most importantly it sends a signal this behavior is not on.”
Fighting fire with repellant
Staron and her colleagues explained that they’re tired of the smell caused by late-night party goers who relieve themselves on public buildings, and turned to the high-tech paint, which is primarily used to build cargo ships, to dissuade the people known as “Wildpinkler” or “Wild urinators” from relieving themselves in public, according to The Telegraph.
The signs, posted in both German and English, read “Hier nicht pinkeln! Wir pinkeln zurueck (Do not pee here! We pee back!),” added the news organization. A YouTube video posted by the organization, which shows Staron putting up the signs, drew over 180,000 views on its first day alone. As of Monday morning, it had been viewed more than 2.2 million times.
The paint is expensive, costing a reported 500 euros ($545) for enough of the coating to cover a 65 square foot (six square meter) area, but Staron said that it was worth the cost, and that it was used as a last resort after community leaders realized that using more conventional methods, such as increasing fines for the act, simply weren’t working.
“If you compare the work involved for daily cleaning of the mess and the awful smell, as well as all the collateral damage involved, it has definitely been well worth it,” she explained. “We tried to analyze the problem and come up with a solution. We were especially interested in coming up with an idea that would be suitable for this quarter.”
“It was a real annoyance that was growing and growing. We wanted to bring people to reason,” Uwe Christiansen, the owner of several local bars as well as a member of the St. Pauli Interest Community (IG St. Pauli), told The Local. “I’ve seen in Facebook and the local newspapers that the reactions were very positive. People were just tired of the peeing on walls, home entrances and playgrounds.”