Researchers headed to the streets in New York City; New Haven, Connecticut; and New Brunswick, New Jersey, and tracked the behaviors of unsuspecting passersby. They also analyzed the movements of 15 million cellphone GPS data points, and surveyed 800 people about their practices. They found that women are far superior at wearing masks, social distancing, and hand washing, and are more likely to stay home and limit contact with family and friends. Women also are more likely to rely on advice from medical experts.Yale study reveals which gender is better at social distancing. Take a guess — https://www.fastcompany.com/90562466/yale-study-reveals-which-gender-is-better-at-social-distancing-take-a-guess?partner=rss&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=feedburner+fastcompany&utm_content=feedburner
When people envision social distancing, they typically think about the “6-foot rule.”
It’s true that staying 6 feet from other people can reduce the chance of a coronavirus-laden respiratory droplet landing in your eyes, nose or mouth when someone coughs. Most of these droplets are too tiny to see, and people are expelling them into the air all the time – when they shout, talk or even just breathe.
But the 6-foot rule doesn’t account for all risks, particularly indoors.
Think about walking into a room where someone is smoking a cigarette. The closer you are to the cigarette, the stronger the smell – and the more smoke you’re inhaling. That smoke also lingers in the air. Over time, it won’t matter where you are in the room; the smoke will be everywhere.
Cigarette smoke comprises particles that are similar in size to the smaller respiratory droplets expelled by humans – the ones that linger in the air the longest. While it’s not a perfect analogy, picturing how cigarette smoke moves through different environments, both indoors and outdoors, can help in visualizing how virus-laden droplets circulate in the air.
As professors who study fluid dynamics and aerosols, we have been exploring how COVID-19 circulates and the risks it creates. The 6-foot rule is a good benchmark that’s easy to remember, but it’s important to understand its limitations.
Aerosols and an 86-year-old rule
The 6-foot rule goes back to a paper published in 1934 by William F. Wells, who was studying how tuberculosis spreads. Wells estimated that small respiratory droplets evaporate quickly, while large ones rapidly fall to the ground, following a ballistic-like trajectory. He found that the farthest any droplets traveled before either settling or evaporating was about 6 feet.
While that distance can reduce exposure, it does not provide a complete picture of infection risk from the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
When people exhale, they expel respiratory droplets with a wide range of sizes. Most are smaller than 10 microns in diameter. These can quickly decrease to approximately 40% of their original diameter, or smaller, due to evaporation.
The droplets will not completely evaporate, however. This is because they consist of both water and organic matter, potentially including the SARS-CoV-2 virus. These tiny droplets stay suspended in the air for minutes to hours, posing a risk to anyone who comes into contact with them. When suspended in the air, these droplets are commonly referred to as aerosols.
Indoors or outdoors: Ventilation matters
Infection risk is highest right next to a person who has the virus and decreases with distance. However, the way respiratory droplets mix in the air and the resulting concentration influence the distance needed to safely avoid exposure.
Outdoors, the combination of physical distancing and face coverings provides excellent protection against virus transmission. Think again of being near a smoker. Smoke can be carried by the wind much farther than 6 feet, but high concentrations of smoke do not usually build up outdoors because the smoke is quickly diluted by the large volume of air. A highly effective strategy to avoid breathing smoke is to avoid being directly downwind of the smoker. This is also true for respiratory droplets.
Indoors, the picture is very different.
Very light room air currents from fans and ventilation units can transport respiratory droplets over distances much greater than 6 feet. However, unlike being outdoors, most indoor spaces have poor ventilation. That allows the concentration of small airborne respiratory droplets to build up over time, reaching all corners of a room.
When indoors, the infection risk depends on variables such as the number of people in the room, the size of the room and the ventilation rate. Speaking loudly, yelling or singing can also generate much larger concentrations of droplets, greatly increasing the associated infection risk.
Strategies for staying safe
In pre-COVID-19 times, few people worried about respiratory infection from small virus-laden droplets accumulating indoors because their virus load was usually too low to cause an infection.
With SARS-CoV-2, the situation is different. Studies have shown that COVID-19-positive patients, even those who are asymptomatic, carry a high load of the virus in their oral fluids. When airborne droplets emitted by these patients during conversation, singing and so on are inhaled, respiratory infection is possible.
There is no safe distance in a poorly ventilated room, unfortunately. Good ventilation and filtration strategies that bring in fresh air are critical to reduce aerosol concentration levels, just as opening windows can clear out a smoke-filled room.
In addition, masks or face coverings should be worn at all times in public indoor environments. They both reduce the concentration of respiratory droplets being expelled into the room and provide some protection against inhaling infectious aerosols.
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Finally, because the risk of infection increases with exposure time, limiting the amount of time spent inside public spaces is also important.
The 6-foot social distancing guideline is a critical tool for combating the spread of COVID-19. However, as more activities move indoors with the arrival of cooler weather this fall, implementing safeguards, including those you might use to avoid inhaling cigarette smoke, will be essential.
Byron Erath, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Clarkson University; Andrea Ferro, Professor of Civil & Environmental Engineering, Clarkson University; Goodarz Ahmadi, Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Clarkson University, and Suresh Dhaniyala, Bayard D. Clarkson Distinguished Professor of Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering, Clarkson University
Restaurant and bar owners worldwide are rapidly innovating to accommodate social distancing requirements in their establishments. One pub landlord has a crafty solution, and it’s positively … electric. Johnny McFadden, landlord of The Star Inn in Cornwall, England, installed an electric fence in his pub to maintain a safe distance between pub goers and his…
Not The Onion.
You can’t make this stuff up.
Americans are spending more time than ever at home right now, with trips outdoors limited to only the absolutely necessary. While alcohol businesses, including wine and liquor stores, wineries, breweries, and distilleries, have been deemed “essential” in states where work restrictions are in effect, U.S. drinkers are increasingly making their alcohol purchases online. Over the…
Triple. Digit. Growth.
As an EM doc said in a prior post Coronavirus made simple by your friendly neighborhood emergency physician when you fall don’t go to the ER.
I’ve spent most of my life learning about what kills people. Hey, it’s a job and I love it.
The numbers in Oklahoma are blessedly small. Too small for statistical significance but there are some interesting aspects to these numbers. The 2 out of state positives are professional basketball players. We shouldn’t expect a huge increase from out of state since Oklahoma is not exactly a vacation tourist type destination and no one is traveling much nowadays. The first positives were in Tulsa county. That number hasn’t really moved much but Oklahoma county numbers have, a clear indicator of community spread.
The most disturbing numbers are the positives ages 18-64. This is not Wuhan. This is not Italy. This is not Iran. This is not Spain. This is Oklahoma.
Stay safe and act accordingly to your specific locale.
|PUIs Pending Results||110|
|County||COVID-19 Cases by County*|
|Age Group, Years||COVID-19 Cases*|
|Age Range||0-75 yrs|
|COVID-19 Cases by Gender|
Data Source: Acute Disease Service, Oklahoma State Department of Health.
*As of 2020-03-18 at 07:00 AM.
To flatten the curve and mitigate the impact of coronavirus we should be practicing social distancing. It is not obvious to most how this should be accomplished but there is a great article on this at The New Yorker which discusses an information sheet on the topic provided by Dr. Asaf Bitton, The New Yorker…
Thank you Anthony C. Pearson, MD, FACC.
Eighty-six percent of people in China who were infected with novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) were not tested in the two week period before travel restrictions came into force on January 23 in Wuhan and other cities. And these undetected cases contributed to the majority of virus spread in the community, says a paper published in the journal Science. The paper says that undetected cases can expose a large population to the virus than would otherwise occur. The study found undetected cases were the source of infection for 79% of documented cases.
And this is precisely why you must stay at home as much as possible in the near term future. Limit your movements, avoid crowds, use common sense.
Marler Clark is a law firm in Seattle Washington. Outstandingly proactive and quoted here for my readers to view.
I especially liked the generous financial contribution to the employees and the last item on the list to stock in your pantry.
Here is what I sent my staff late last week:
All, see symptoms below – if you are sick, please stay home.
I have asked Chris and Michelle to give me some ideas on recommendations on how to responsibly deal with this from a medical issue. We will give you all our thoughts early next week.
All, please email to Leslie all your contact information and a close contact too. Leslie, please share that with all.
All, please let me know if anyone needs any technology to work from home if necessary if this becomes a bigger problem. Think about what you might need to work from home for an extended period of time. What do you need to effectively do your job from home – computer, paper, pens, etc.? COVID-19 is not an excuse to work from home, but I want to be prepared and sensible.
Also, let’s look at travel schedules over the coming months to see if there are alternatives. Please shoot me your travel over the next 30-60 days.
All, take a hard look at your cases – what deadlines might be impacted by Court and other office closures, etc. I want us to be proactive and think ahead. I do not want deadlines missed.
Finally, not to be a “prepper,” but Kelli, please drop $2,500 (pre-tax) into everyone’s account on Monday to be used as they see fit to prepare for some disruptions. I have not thought of exactly what those needs might be, but there are probably a few websites that have suggestions.
Here are some ideas for being prepared for home:
All medications (over the counter *ibuprofen* , allergy, cold etc and prescriptions )
All household products you will need for two weeks (toilet paper, soap, paper towels, laundry detergent, cleaning supplies, etc)
Supply of water for two weeks
Food for two weeks
⁃ Chicken broth
⁃ Potatoes – sweet, Yukon, etc
⁃ Canned tomatoes
⁃ Steel cut oats
⁃ Peanut butter
⁃ Bread *freezer*
⁃ Frozen meat
⁃ Canned fish
⁃ Jerky or dried meat
⁃ Dried nuts and fruit
⁃ Wine/booze of choice