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How are you most likely to catch Covid?

New research says the risk of surface transmission is low

Luke MintzFri, 12 February 2021, 10:46 am·7-min read

Covid droplets
Covid droplets

What is the most likely way you will catch coronavirus? Is it through cough droplets, transferred at close range; or tiny particles, known as aerosols, that linger in the air for hours; or is it through touching an infected object?

It seems a simple enough question, and perhaps one that should already have been answered 11 months into a pandemic that at the time of writing has killed 2.4 million people (including 115,000 in the UK). But virology – the study of viruses and how they spread – is a famously tricky science.

The problem, says Paul Hunter, a professor of medicine at the university of East Anglia, and occasional advisor to the World Health Organisation (WHO), is that it is very difficult for scientists to isolate how exactly a patient has picked up a virus – especially once it is as widespread as Sars-Cov-2 (the virus that causes Covid-19), which has now infected 107 million people across the world.

An infected person might indeed have touched the same supermarket checkout screen as another who recently tested positive – but they also went shopping, spoke to a delivery courier, and their children mingled with classmates in school. How can we be sure the checkout screen was to blame?

A year of intense scientific research has given us some valuable clues about how the coronavirus spreads.

Surfaces (fomites)

There’s little doubt that coronavirus can theoretically spread through commonly-handled physical objects or surfaces that become ‘infected’ with the virus – known by epidemiologists as ‘fomites’. Yet recently some scientists have said too much emphasis has been placed on fomites. In a review of research published in The Lancet in July, Emanuel Goldman, a microbiologist at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, said some government advice about deep-cleaning surfaces was “thin and probably flawed”. Most of the research at that point was carried out in controlled laboratory settings, using huge amounts of the virus, he said – not necessarily a realistic environment. He thinks the trend of people using harsh chemicals to deep-clean their post was probably unjustified – although he added that hand-washing and sanitiser is still a good idea.

And an editorial by the journal Nature earlier this month advised: “Catching the coronavirus from surfaces is rare. The WHO and national public health agencies need to clarify their advice.”

Hunter says: “It’s an entirely plausible route of infection, but it’s been difficult to prove it beyond any shadow of doubt.” Photographs of health officials in hazmat suits disinfecting streets and bridges, as seen in Spain, Italy, China, and various other countries, “fills me and most of my colleagues with more than a little amusement,” he adds.

Many of the best studies on transmission were carried out at the beginning of the pandemic, because later on the virus became so widespread it became difficult to isolate specific routes of transmission. In a small study carried out last February, for example, researchers took swabs from various surfaces in a Wuhan hospital that was treating a high number of Covid-positive patients. They found virus particles on computer mice, bins, bed handrails, doorknobs and even on the soles of medical employees’ shoes.

Another study published in the New England Journal of Medicine found the virus can survive for up to 72 hours on plastic and stainless steel, eight hours on copper, and four hours on porous surfaces like cardboard.

But a year into the pandemic, epidemiologists are still to find concrete cases in which fomite transmission was clearly to blame. As long ago as July, a WHO report said fomites are a “likely” route of transmission, but found “no specific reports” of somebody catching the virus this way – although the scientists noted it was “difficult to discern” the difference between fomite transmission and other forms of transmission. Since then, no slam-dunk evidence has emerged, says Hunter.

Close contact droplets

Scientists generally agree that respiratory droplets, transferred via close contact between people, are the most likely route of transmission.

When you cough or sneeze, you emit thousands of droplets, like rain. They are essentially tiny drops of saliva (scientists only call them droplets because they are invisible to the naked eye). They can fly about three feet before dropping to the ground, or six feet if the cough is particularly forceful.

These droplets contain particles. The largest and heaviest of the particles will fall straight to the ground, while the smallest, known as aerosols, will continue to float about in the air for some time (see below). It is those larger, heavier particles that cause the bulk of Covid transmission, scientists say. If they land on a wet part of your face, you risk becoming infected.

Singing or speaking loudly is thought to be particularly risky, because it extends your ‘breath range’ – the distance you expel droplets in your breath. In March, US authorities reported an outbreak at a choir in Skagit, Washington; of the 121 members who attended two rehearsals (on March 3 and 10), 53 became ill with Covid and two died (this at a time when Covid was relatively rare in the West Coast state).

Hunter says the main risk from droplet transmission comes from “indoor, crowded environments, where people don’t socially distance. And if they’re singing, then that increases the risk as well.”

Airborne transmission

Whilst scientists agree that you can easily catch coronavirus from larger cough droplets exchanged at close range with an infected person, a far more controversial question is whether you can catch the virus from tiny, airborne particles, known as aerosols.

The key point about aerosols is that they float about in the air for hours, meaning you could theoretically catch the virus despite having no contact with an infected person – if you walk into a train carriage where an infected person was standing several hours ago, for example. The bacterium that causes tuberculosis and the viruses that cause measles and chickenpox are all commonly spread through aerosols.

Last spring, most of the scientific community was sceptical that airborne transmission played any meaningful role in the spread of Covid. But the pandemic has seen a gradual shift in thinking; last summer, 239 scientists in 32 countries wrote an open letter to the WHO, urging the body to take airborne transmission more seriously.

Now, scientists in the WHO and the Centers for Disease Control, the influential American equivalent of Public Health England, say aerosol transmission is possible – but much less likely.

In study on Covid published in May in the journal Nature Research, researchers set up ‘aerosol traps’ around two hospitals in Wuhan, and found bits of the virus’s genetic material floating around indoor toilets, as well as a room in the hospital where medical staff removed their masks, gowns, and gloves. Researchers said their findings support the idea that Sars-Cov-2 particles might be able to hang around in the air for hours, highlighting the importance of good indoor ventilation. The study did not try to answer whether those virus particles were actually causing infection (they might have been dead or degraded particles).

Another investigation, of a restaurant in Guangzhou, China, found traces of Sars-Cov-2 in the air conditioning system – suggesting that particles of the virus were being blown about the restaurant. The restaurant became the target of investigation after one diner was found to have infected nine others while eating there.

But as with fomite transmission, scientists have found very few concrete cases in which it was clear that aerosols played a role in transmission.

WHO advice published in October said: “Aerosol transmission can occur in specific settings, particularly in indoor, crowded and inadequately ventilated spaces, where infected person(s) spend long periods of time with others, such as restaurants, choir practices, fitness classes, nightclubs, offices and/or places of worship.”

Last year Germany added regular ventilation of rooms to its formula for tackling coronavirus, with opening windows hailed by Angela Merkel as one of the “cheapest and effective ways” of fighting the virus.

Other forms

Scientists say it may be possible to catch Covid from urine or faeces – but this is much less likely than other forms of transmission, and again there have been no reported cases.

Source http://www.telegraph.co.uk/

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Are you ready for the end of lockdown?

Finding the time to read this article could save a life. 

The Use of Ozone to Protect Care Home Residents and Staff  

The fight to keep the coronavirus out of our residential care homes and managing a virus breakout is a tough and ongoing battle. For those that have already had infections within the home it is imperative that. 

With the elderly residents being some of the most vulnerable in our society, it is extremely hard work to keep on top of all the extra measures put in place to help protect them and keep them and the staff safe from being infected with COVID.  

While restrictions may have been put on families from visiting care homes, regular deliveries from suppliers are still needed. Food, PPE, cleaning & medical supplies are being delivered, on a daily basis, in some cases.

All inbound deliveries have to be wiped down, disinfected and sanitised before being taken into the main building. Wiping down the items can take some time and leaving the deliveries in a room for at least 24 hours can also be problematic. 

A more efficient option that can save considerable time, effort and money is an Envirosafe Ozone Generating machine. 

Deliveries are put into a closed room, the Envirusafe unit is then turned on and begins to produce ozone gas that will then begin its work by permeating, sanitising and sterilising the air and everything it touches, 

Ozone is the strongest disinfectant available, more than 50 times stronger than other disinfectants, including chlorine, and it works up to 3,000 times faster!

Ozone cannot be stored and is produced at the point of use, on-site, using an ozone generator, and they cost less than a light bulb to run making them very cost effective. 

Virtually anything can be sanitised and disinfected using ozone and, unlike chemicals, there are no toxic residues that need to be monitored, making the Envirusafe range of units ideal for the sanitisation of pharmaceutical equipment, PPE, staff uniforms, medical supplies and fresh food deliveries.  

Not only will ozone disinfect surfaces, food, water, clothing and other items is also very effective at destroying airborne viruses, pathogens and microorganisms and can be used as a way to provide an added layer of protection in areas that are prone to high traffic. Entrance halls, waiting rooms, communal areas, treatment rooms, washrooms and toilets can all be treated with ozone.  

Another benefit of ozone is that, until now, there has been no evidence that any microorganism, virus or bacteria has been able to build resistance to ozone unlike other chemical disinfectants that are used.

There are 3 basic types of ozone generators that we produce. 

Low level units – The low level ozone generators produce low levels of ozone. These units are installed permanently into bathrooms, meeting rooms, kitchens, wash rooms and toilets and are operated on a timer to continually keep the areas santised. These are especially useful for items like door handles, for example, where cleaning after every time the handle is touched is impractical. 

Fan assisted units – The larger ozone generators are used to shock treat rooms and larger spaces and as a fast way to disinfect deliveries, food, clothes, furniture, equipment and uniforms, PPE and other objects and equipment. Items are placed in the room and the ozone generates higher levels of ozone that sanitises, disinfects and sterilises everything it touches. 

Piped Systems – The piped units produce high levels of ozone that can be piped into confined spaces like buses, coaches, cars, cupboards and storerooms. You can ozonate water which can then be used as a liquid disinfectant to wipe down surfaces and to sterilise fruit and vegetable 

Envirosafe Ozone Sanitiser Uses in a Care Home Environment 

  • Disinfect inbound supplies and deliveries
  • Disinfect and sterlise staff uniforms and PPE including N95 masks at the end of the shift.
  • Shock treat rooms that have been occupied by those infected with COVID19
  • Treat day rooms, communal rooms and thoroughfares at the end of the day  
  • Ongoing disinfection of bathrooms, toilets, washrooms, kitchens and meeting rooms 

Ozone has been used commercially for many years to sanitise sewage water and food processing plants, breweries and even fishing trawlers. 

Ozone is also an excellent deodoriser removing stubborn smells like urine, vomit, sour milk and faeces as well as tobacco smoke, mould and damp smells. 

For more information contact

Bob Long – Head of Technical 

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Press Release – Envirusafe Helping Businesses In Their Fight Against COVID19

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 27th January 2021  

Contact: Bob Long
Company: Envirusafe
Telephone: 01925 321 888
info@envirusafe.co.uk
www.envirusafe.co.uk

Envirusafe Helping Businesses With Their Fight Against Covid-19

Envirusafe, Thornton, Lancashire: Recently launched its latest range of wall mounted sanitisers designed to provide an extra layer of protection to businesses against the coronavirus.

The Mountain Fresh Ozone Sanitisers have been used for many years, predominantly as effective deodorizers but, due to their use of ozone, which is a very powerful disinfectant, the units are now being used to aid in the fight against the COVID-19 virus.

The units produce low levels of ozone gas which has been scientifically proven to destroy the coronavirus on contact, sanitising the air and disinfecting the surfaces it touches.

Ozone works by oxidising and destroying the outer protein shell of the virus on contact.

Bob Long, head of technical said “ozone is the most powerful disinfectant known to man and yet virtually no one knows about it” It is 50 times more powerful than the strongest disinfectant, only extreme heat beats it” He added. “By installing and running these small units in communal areas in care homes, shops, offices, meeting and conference rooms, public toilets and kitchen areas they help to keep the air and surfaces free from viruses and bacteria, slowing the spread of infections down”.

Bob was also quick to say, “This is not a magic wand, it does not replace a good cleaning regime. This is another tool in your arsenal to combat the virus and protect yourself, your staff and your customers”.

Residential care homes have been very badly hit by COVID and a prominent care home in Lytham St Anne’s which had an outbreak, recently installed our units throughout the home and were so impressed they have now installed them at another of their homes in Wales with further units soon going into their places in Scotland. A spokesperson for the homes said the first thing they noticed was how fresh the areas that were being treated smelt.

Benefits of the EnVirusafe Ozone Sanitisers include.

  • Easy to install
  • Virtually no running costs
  • No chemicals needed
  • Leaves no toxic residue
  • Unused ozone reverts to oxygen
  • Powerful, Fast and effective
  • Safe to be used in food processing areas
  • Built in timer
  • Works 24/7 automatically sanitising the air and the surfaces the ozone touches
  • As a gas, it gets into all the hard to reach or inaccessible places.

Further information on our product range can be found on our website

www.enVirusafe.co.uk
147 – 149 Victoria Road East
Thornton, Lancashire
FY5 5HH  
info@envirusafe.co.uk  
+44 (0) 1925 321 888

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Ozone, is it the Best Kept Secret Killer of the Coronavirus?

Ozone, is it the Best Kept Secret Killer of the Coronavirus? 

The speed that the COVID-19 virus spread took the world by surprise and there is no doubt it is here to stay for the foreseeable future. It has changed the way we live, probably forever.  

Every corner of the world has been affected with many millions of people infected. It is imperative that we do all that we can to try to help slow the spread of this disease down.  

The pandemic has had people scrambling for effective ways to protect their staff and customers  and keep them safe. Primarily this is being achieved through new processes and cleaning  regimes which is obviously different for each type of business. One very important thing is to  find an efficient way to disinfect and sanitise their business.  

Ozone is fast becoming the go-to option and could very well be the best kept secret killer of  Coronavirus. There have been numerous scientific studies that have proven that ozone not only kills the coronavirus but over 99% of bacteria, other viruses and pathogens in the air and on surfaces and objects. It was highly effective against the SARS outbreak at the beginning of the2000s, and it can do the same for COVID.  

The thing is, apart from food processing companies, brewers, fishing trawlers and water  treatment plants very few people have actually heard of or understand just how good ozone  sanitisation is.  

However, this is changing as more and more people discover just how easy and effective using  ozone as part of their cleaning regime is.  

What is Ozone?  

Ozone is basically gaseous oxygen with one extra oxygen atom. Ozone can quickly oxidise and  destroy organic materials. It begins work instantly destroying the airborne pathogens, bacteria,  viruses and mould in seconds.  

Ozone is heavier than air and it continues its work as it lands on surfaces and objects in the  room including all of those hard to reach and inaccessible places. This is why it can be used very  effectively to disinfect and sanitise all sorts of surfaces.  

All you need is a machine that generates ozone, and we have you covered there. There are basically 2 different types of ozone generators you can use.  

Low Concentration Sanitisers

These produce low levels of ozone and can be used 24/7 continuously sanitising the area that  they are installed. These units are ideal for wash rooms, toilets, shower blocks, changing rooms  hallways and stairwells for example. 

High Level Ozone Sanitisers  

These ozone generators are designed to shock a room and can be used in almost any home or  work environment. They are used to sanitise and disinfect offices, hotel rooms, reception areas,  shops, kitchens, pubs, bars and restaurants, nursing homes, hospitals, schools, nurseries and  any other area where you need to keep clean and sanitised.  

Once the area has been cleaned down, the ozone sanitising unit is switched on, and the room is  vacated. Leaving the ozone to do its job. Once it is finished, between 20 minutes and an hour,  (depending on the size of the room) the room is then aired and ready to use.  

The Difference Between Cleaning, Disinfecting & Sanitising 

Methods such as pressure washing are going to be very effective in being able to deep clean  your business and soap, water and good old elbow grease are also proven methods of cleaning,  though, is not exactly the same thing as sanitising. In this case, the benefits that you can get  from using an ozone generator are far better than you are going to be able to achieve with  conventional cleaning methods.  

When you clean, you have one goal in mind; turn something that looks dirty into something  that is sparkling clean. If you are disinfecting or sanitising, you are trying to kill germs and  bacteria that live within every surface and object as well as in the air that we breathe. While  sanitising an area may not provide results that are easy to see and feel, this process is essential  as part of your efforts against Coronavirus.  

Is Ozone Safe To Use? 

Ozone has a very distinct smell when a generator produces it; you are most likely going to be  able to smell it in the air and know that the ozone generator is doing its job of sanitisation.  

As with any powerful disinfectant, you need to take precautions when using the larger ozone  generators. Unlike chlorine or sodium hypochlorite, which can leave toxic residue on your  surface’s ozone reverts to oxygen and, once dissipated, leaves no residue making it  entirely safe to use in every area and every type of business. 

Should I Be Looking At Ozone As A Viable Way To Combat COVID-19? 


Disinfecting your business or home with ozone generators can undoubtedly go a long way in  keeping the airspace free of COVID-19. That means you can relax with some other measures that you might take to prevent it. Keeping all the different objects in and around  your house clean can also help.  

Using an ozone generator in the right dosage is not going to harm you, your staff or your  customers. At the end of the day, we are talking about a low-risk, high reward method that can  allow you to sleep better at night.  

It is powerful, effective and fast, so using ozone can be a win-win and help you in the fight  against coronavirus.

Posted on

Envirusafe Helping Businesses In Their Fight Against Covid-19

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 27th January 2021  

Contact: Bob Long
Company: Envirusafe
Telephone: 01925 321 888
info@envirusafe.co.uk

www.envirusafe.co.uk

Envirusafe Helping Businesses in Their Fight Against Covid-19

Envirusafe, Thornton, Lancashire: Recently launched its latest range of wall mounted sanitisers designed to provide an extra layer of protection to businesses against the coronavirus.

The Mountain Fresh Ozone Sanitisers have been used for many years, predominantly as effective deodorizers but, due to their use of ozone, which is a very powerful disinfectant, the units are now being used to aid in the fight against the COVID-19 virus.

The units produce low levels of ozone gas which has been scientifically proven to destroy the coronavirus on contact, sanitising the air and disinfecting the surfaces it touches.

Ozone works by oxidising and destroying the outer protein shell of the virus on contact.

Bob Long, head of technical said “ozone is the most powerful disinfectant known to man and yet virtually no one knows about it” It is 50 times more powerful than the strongest disinfectant, only extreme heat beats it” He added. “By installing and running these small units in communal areas in care homes, shops, offices, meeting and conference rooms, public toilets and kitchen areas they help to keep the air and surfaces free from viruses and bacteria, slowing the spread of infections down”.

Bob was also quick to say, “This is not a magic wand, it does not replace a good cleaning regime. This is another tool in your arsenal to combat the virus and protect yourself, your staff and your customers”.

Residential care homes have been very badly hit by COVID and a prominent care home in Lytham St Anne’s which had an outbreak, recently installed our units throughout the home and were so impressed they have now installed them at another of their homes in Wales with further units soon going into their places in Scotland. A spokesperson for the homes said the first thing they noticed was how fresh the areas that were being treated smelt.

Benefits of the EnVirusafe Ozone Sanitisers include.

  • ·  Easy to install
  • ·  Virtually no running costs
  • ·  No chemicals needed
  • ·  Leaves no toxic residue
  • ·  Unused ozone reverts to oxygen
  • ·  Powerful, Fast and effective
  • ·  Safe to be used in food processing areas.
  • ·  Built in timer
  • ·  Works 24/7 automatically sanitising the air and the surfaces the ozone touches
  • ·  As a gas, it gets into all the hard to reach or inaccessible places.  

Further information on our product range can be found on our website

www.enVirusafe.co.uk

147–149 Victoria Road East
Thornton, Lancashire
FY5 5HH  
info@envirusafe.co.uk  
+44 (0) 1925 321 888

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Ozone, The Strongest Disinfectant On The Planet What is it and How Does It Work

ozone generators

Ozone is a molecule that is made up of three oxygen atoms.

ozone generators

This molecule is a powerful oxidiser with many industrial and consumer applications.

After a thunderstorm, the fresh, clean smell in the air is from ozone produced by lightning. Photocopiers also produce ozone and this is the smell that you get when you have been doing a long run of photocopying.

Ozone sanitises, deodorises and disinfects.

When pollutants like bad smells, bacteria or viruses come in contact with ozone, they are destroyed by oxidation.

Ozone has a lot of application for both residential and industrial uses.

Ozone cannot be stored like other gases because of its half-life properties. It begins to decompose the moment it is produced and this is why it needs to produced on demand in situ by an ozone generator.

Ozone as a Deodoriser

Ozone generators producing very low levels of ozone have been sold as air fresheners, air purifiers and deodorisers in hotel toilets and wash rooms for many years.

Few people are aware of how it does it actually works. They just know it does. What they don’t know is that It works by attacking and killing the bacteria that causes the smells by oxidisation. Ozone can kill bacteria, pathogens and viruses on impact. So, whilst they have been used to remove smells and odours it has in fact also been sanitising and disinfecting these small areas.

Now, with the coronavirus causing havoc around the globe the deodorising effect has become of secondary importance to the fact that it will keep areas free from these harmful viruses and bacteria.

Not only are they used in bathrooms and toilets, they also remove smells from carpets, soft furnishings and clothes. Ozone can be used to kill mould spores and remove the smell of damp after a flood underneath floorboards or in a basement as well as eliminating the odour from smoke damaged rooms after a fire.

Ozone reaches parts other cleaners cannot.

As ozone is a gas that is heavier than air, it can reach areas that other traditional cleaning methods cannot like under floorboards, behind cupboards in the loft space or other restricted spaces and other hard to reach areas. They can be used to remove smells from the car of heavy smoker or one that has had milk , vomit or other nasties spilt underneath the seats or in the boot.

Ozone Used For Water Treatment

Ozone is used extensively in water treatment plants to improving water quality.

It is much more effective than chlorine, less expensive and because ozone is basically oxygen molecules is non toxic and better for the environment than chlorine or other chemicals which have been linked to cancer.

Food preservation

Ozone kills microbes and prevents mould spores growing which helps prolong the shelf life of fresh food.

Unlike using chemicals ozone leaves no chemical residue, does not produce any harmful by priducts and leaves no aftertaste.

By washing fruit and vegetable in ozonised water or subjecting meat to an ozone filled environment will slow down the ageing process and keep the food fresher for longer reducing water through spoilage.

For more details on how ozone can help protect your staff and customers contact us. We will be ahppy to answer any questions or queries that you have and advise you on the best system for your situation.