microwave toilet

This photo of a microwave next to a toilet in Canada just went viral

Though the saying about not going to the washroom where you eat is intended to be figurative, if taken literally it does offer a valid point about the importance of a sanitary food environment.

Unfortunately, some bus drivers in B.C. have had to resort to preparing meals in a bathroom due to inadequate rest facilities along their TransLink line.

A photo of a washroom owned by Coast Mountain Bus Company and used by North Vancouver TransLink drivers went viral over the weekend due to the cringeworthy proximity of a microwave to the toilet.

The microwave and a chair, presumably used by drivers while they wait for their meal to heat, appear to sit less than a metre away from the toilet, prompting the gag reflexes of many social media users.

The transit company has apparently had no hand in the unorthodox bathroom appliance, which a TransLink representative told CityNews the company has repeatedly removed, only to have it reappear again.

The stomach-turning picture comes at a tense time for TransLink and its employees, who have been involved in a labour dispute regarding fair pay, benefits and working conditions for weeks.

Unionized transit workers' concerns include the length and frequency of recovery times for eating and bathroom breaks. They began striking on November 1.

Though drivers have access to 53 break facilities along TransLink's routes — "most" of which have break rooms — some, like the pictured bathroom at the end of the 210 Lynn Valley route, are solely washrooms and do not include space to prepare or eat meals.

As the cold winter months set in, drivers on some lines may want to opt for sandwiches instead of soup, depending on whether anything changes after the current TransLink labour action or the viral washroom photograph.

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