|Technical notes: Special Considerations for Programming in Unstable Situations (UNICEF, 2000, 490 p.)|
|Chapter 19 - Annex 1: Types of Latrine|
The most common excreta disposal system, in many parts of the world, is the individual family pit latrine. It consists of a squatting plate/slab (sometimes fitted with a pedestal seat for comfort and ease) and fitted above a hole in the ground with a superstructure for privacy. A seat/squat hole cover in these types of pits helps reduce fly breeding and smells.
Individual families can dig the pit and build the superstructure. If used by only one family, these latrines are usually well maintained. Pit latrines can also be used in clusters as communal facilities, but maintenance and cleaning arrangements must be assured.
· The pit is typically about 1 m across and 2 m deep.
· The rim of the pit should be raised about 15 cm above ground level. And a drain-off ditch dug around the superstructure to divert any rainwater run-off.
· In unconsolidated soil conditions, the sides of the pit should be reinforced, perhaps to a depth of 1 m below ground level to prevent collapse (old open-ended oil drums or concrete rings make good liners in sandy and unconsolidated soils)
· Where cement is hard to get, a light wooden squatting plate or wooden lattice, although harder to clean, may be more practical.
· When the pit is three quarters full, it should be back-filled with soil and closed off. The superstructure and squatting plate should then be moved to a new pit.
As with trenched latrines, always address privacy, maintenance and hygiene issues.