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It’s time to come “clean” about Coronavirus and transmission from hard surfaces.


You have probably seen an article or two about the Coronavirus and how it can be transmitted from a hard surface to a person. This could happen if an individual touched the surface and then touched their eye, nose or mouth. Is this really occurring or is it just speculation? I think it is time we examine the facts about how likely this could actually occur.

Below is a chart posted in August by the Cleveland Clinic showing how long the virus can stay on a surface. Glass – 5 days. Wood – 4 days. Plastic and stainless steel – 3 days. Cardboard less than 24 hours. Cloth surfaces or carpeting – possibly hours.

At first glance, this seems to be quite alarming. Dig a little deeper and you will find that it is very unlikely that the virus will be transferred from a hard surface to a person. Viruses cannot survive without a living host and the virus starts to die very quickly on a hard surface, says infectious disease expert, Dr. Esper. There may be a trace of the virus after a few hours or days, but it is thousands of times less than what was originally deposited on the surface from the start. If you want to dig even deeper to see a study on this click here.

Just because the virus is detectable on a surface does not mean there is enough of it to make someone sick. Scientists are still trying to figure out what the infectious dose requirement is to cause an infection. Stay tuned for more up to date facts as they come out.

We should continue to clean and disinfect hard surfaces on a regular basis. There is no reason to stop doing that. We want to be as safe as possible. We just don’t need to go overboard when it come to disinfecting, especially when it comes to soft porous surfaces like carpeting and cloth covered surfaces. I see too many companies trying to take advantage of people during this crisis by playing on their fears. Some of the advertisements that I have seen with workers in full hazmat suits spraying everything down is an example of what I am talking about. This is unnecessary and a waste of time and resources.

The bottom line is that the cleaning industry needs to be more educated and transparent about the virus and communicate this information accurately to their clients, so they can make an informed decision about what to do.

If you would like to discuss the issue further or learn more, please contact Tim Maloney at 412-726-0800