Covid-19 Second Wave: Currently-followed distancing norms inadequate for winter season, say scientists
New Delhi | Jagran Lifestyle Desk: With the winter season in offing, there is a high probability of second wave of covid-19 infection. In summer season, small aerosol particles played a key role in spreading the contagion, the researchers said direct contact with respiratory droplets could be more pronounced in winter season and lead to a new wave of infection.
The modelling study, published in the journal Nano Letters, also noted that the currently followed physical distancing guidelines are inadequate in curbing the transmission of Covid-19. The coming season may present us with a new set of challenges given our tendency to head inside and close our windows to the cold weather.
"We found that in most situations, respiratory droplets travel longer distances than the 6-foot social distance recommended by the CDC," said Yanying Zhu, a co-author of the study from the University of California (UC) Santa Barbara in the US.
In indoor environments such as walk-in refrigerators and coolers, where temperatures are low and humidity is high to keep fresh meat and produce from losing water in storage, the scientists said this effect is increased with the droplets transmitting to distances of up to 6 metres (19.7 feet) before falling to the ground.
The new study was undertaken to understand the secret of this virus's unusual success: its transmissibility, or how it manages to get from host to host.
They said in such environments, the virus is particularly persistent, remaining "infectious from several minutes to longer than a day in various environments" adding that it could be a possible explanation for the super-spreading events reported at multiple meat processing plants. Hot and humid environments, and cold and dry ones, did not differ significantly between aerosol and droplet distribution, according to the researchers.
Posted By: Rakesh Kumar Jha