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close this bookA Guide to the Development of on-site Sanitation (WHO; 1992; 246 pages)
View the documentPreface
close this folderPart I. Foundations of sanitary practice
open this folder and view contentsChapter 1. The need for on-site sanitation
open this folder and view contentsChapter 2. Sanitation and disease transmission
open this folder and view contentsChapter 3. Social and cultural considerations
close this folderChapter 4. Technical options
View the documentOpen defecation
View the documentShallow pit
View the documentSimple pit latrine
View the documentBorehole latrine
View the documentVentilated pit latrine
View the documentPour-flush latrine
View the documentSingle or double pit
View the documentComposting latrine
View the documentSeptic tank
View the documentAqua-privy
View the documentRemoval systems for excreta
open this folder and view contentsPart II. Detailed design, construction, operation and maintenance
open this folder and view contentsPart III. Planning and development of on-site sanitation projects
View the documentReferences
View the documentSelected further reading
View the documentGlossary of terms used in this book
View the documentAnnex 1. Reuse of excreta
View the documentAnnex 2. Sullage
View the documentAnnex 3. Reviewers
View the documentSelected WHO publications of related interest
View the documentBack Cover

Open defecation

Where there are no latrines people resort to defecation in the open. This may be indiscriminate or in special places for defecation generally accepted by the community, such as defecation fields, rubbish and manure heaps, or under trees. Open defecation encourages flies, which spread faeces-related diseases. In moist ground the larvae of intestinal worms develop, and faeces and larvae may be carried by people and animals. Surface water run-off from places where people have defecated results in water pollution. In view of the health hazards created and the degradation of the environment, open defecation should not be tolerated in villages and other built-up areas. There are better options available that confine excreta in such a way that the cycle of reinfection from excreta-related diseases is broken.

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