Critical new research by the National Institutes of Health (NIS) indicates that COVID-19, a strain of the Coronavirus, can survive in the air and on surfaces for extended periods of time.
The research found that the virus can survive for up to 4 hours on copper, up to 24 hours on cardboard, and 2 to 3 days on plastic and stainless steel.
In addition to contact, the transmission of this virus is also plausible through the air as it was identified that the virus can live in the air for 3 hours in an aerosolized form.
Recently, the use of face masks has become not only recommended but mandatory, such as the state of Vitoria in Australia, who is now facing the second wave of the virus, which is sweeping through the state like wildfire. Ensuring you have an approved and laboratory tested face mask will ensure the best protection. It’s also important to note that if you are not using disposable masks, where you regularly dispose of the used one and replace with a fresh hygienic new one, then it is relevant to know if the mask was manufactured to the correct certification specifications as well as how to correctly sanitise your reusable masks.
Vapor containing the virus can be introduced into the air by a simple sneeze, cough or simply speaking. Its for this reason that the use of a mask is a smart one! However, simply wearing a mask alone is not the key to eliminating the virus. Regular hand washing is also required to ensure that when you put the mask on and off, that there is no transfer of the virus from your hands to either your nose, mouth or the mask itself.
Relying on social distancing alone can be a concern when you take into account a person sneezing can transmit vapor from their mouth containing the virus and propel it up to 27 feet (8.2 meters) away at up to an astonishing one hundred miles an hour (160.9km/hr).
What other options do we have when dealing with the virus in the air?
Research shows that Ozone gas has been successful in treating the SARS-COV-1, a virus of the same family as COVID-19, the Coronavirus family, which led to the epidemic in 2003.
Ozone is also widely used in sterilizing equipment in hospitals against bacteria as well as purifying the bottled drinking water provided to their patients.
As discussed in a previous article, Viruses-deactivated & destroyed by secondary sanitation technology, COVID-19 is an enveloped virus containing RNA. Ozone can oxidise (destroy) the virus by breaking through its outer layer and damaging the RNA core, rendering it harmless to a potential host (us).
So, what do we know about Ozone gas and COVID-19? Research would suggest that exposure in to a sufficient dose over a given period of time, COVID-19 would be eliminated from open spaces as well as shadows and crevices in the air and surfaces in the treated environment.
Written by: John Morrison BSc
- Van Doremalen, et al. MedRiv. Aerosol and surface stability of HCoV-19 (SARS-CoV2) compared to SARS- CoV-1. The New England Journal of Medicine. April 16, 2020. https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/nejmc2004973
- M. Elvis & J.S. Ekta. Ozone therapy: A clinical review. NCBI. 2011. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3312702/
- Sarah Gibbens. See how a sneeze can launch germs much farther than 6 feet. National Geographic. April 17, 2020. com/science/2020/04/cornovirus-covid-sneeze-fluid-dynamics-in-photos/
- Juan Carlos Rubio-Romero, et al. Disposable masks: Disinfection and sterilization for reuse, and non-certified manufacturing, in the face of shortages during COVID-19 pandemic. NCBI. May 2020. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7218384/