Since the beginning of the Coronavirus Covid-19 Pandemic people have been worried about whether they can catch the virus from packages they received from China.
Can I catch Coronavirus from a Package That Originates in China?
The short answer is no. The conventional understanding was that Coronaviruses across the board could not live outside the body for more than a couple hours. A recent federal study that was contributed to by a number of organizations found that Covid 19 specifically could remain viable on a stainless steel surface for 72 hours and on cardboard for 24 hours. Most packages come shipped in cardboard. The average shipping time for a package from China is 3 months total. During that time a full month is spent on a freight ship over the open ocean. The virus has no chance of surviving the trip.
Can I catch Coronavirus from the Mailman?
However now that Coronavirus Covid 19 has been spreading person to person within the United States, the surface of your packages could become contaminated by the carrier or the sender prior to shipment. If the shipment is longer than 24 hours it would have to be infected during the final day of transportation on the ground in your city. There is a real concern about mail carriers and other shipping company employees becoming sick and passing the disease onto others, but all major companies are adjusting their procedures to help protect both their employees and customers. For instance Drug Test City is only having one employee handle outgoing orders and they are screened for fever and symptoms daily. We are also treating packages with Lysol before they leave the warehouse.
You are far more likely to catch Coronavirus Covid-19 from a person you have made close contact with than from a package arriving in the mail, but if the package is sealed you can practically eliminate that risk by wearing gloves and treating your packages with spray Lysol and washing your hands. Wait 3-5 minutes after spraying before opening the package or handling without gloves and dispose of the gloves immediately.
I would suggest being cautious, but with proper sanitation and a simple disinfecting protocol you have nothing to worry about when it comes to the mail; you’re more likely to be infected by the mailman himself.
Tips for Dealing With Coronavirus Covid-19
- Wash your hands with antibacterial soap and hot water.
- Hard non-porous surfaces such as stainless steel transmit over 70% of pathogens. Clean them often.
- Avoid touching your face.
- Maintain a distance of 3 meters or 9 feet from other people when possible.
- Disinfect packages at the door. Lysol spray is effective against Coronavirus.
- Hand sanitizer needs to contain more than 60% alcohol to be effective.
- The mortality rate is much higher amongst the elderly with existing health problems.
- All of the measures in place are as much to slow the spread and ease the burden on the healthcare system as they are to try and stop the spread.
- It is believed Covid 19 will slow dramatically during the summer like Influenza. Scientists have already developed vaccines. This should be over in a year or two.