Coronavirus in Water: Can COVID-19 Survive in Water?
Is Coronavirus in Water?
According to the World Health Organization guidance on water, sanitation and healthcare waste relevant to viruses including Coronavirus. During all disease outbreaks, it is very important to ensure that people are provided with safe water, sanitation, and hygienic conditions.
The source of this water is rivers and freshwater lakes that are fed by rivers. Day to day activities water usage thus making it a big factor in spreading coronavirus. The COVID-19 virus can survive in water for over 24 hours.
The water bodies that people mostly interact with and are open to the public are oceans, rivers, lakes and even swimming pools. At a time when we are experiencing water pollution at very high levels, the polluted water can be a carrier of the virus. Rivers that flow across a large area and get polluted throughout their course through sewage release into the waters, chemical release into the river water and also garbage disposal in these rivers.
Body fluids that are rapidly spreading corona make up the bigger percentage of sewage waste thus rivers could be a carrier of the coronavirus. These rivers go into lakes and oceans and expose people to the virus.
The recommended precaution should always be taken anytime one goes outdoors. Ensure that the mouth and nose are covered as well as sanitize your hands regularly.
Ensure that swimming pools are well sanitized. Swimming pools are sanitized to maintain a clear view of the water as well as preventing transmission of infectious bacteria. These bacteria mostly come from the ammonia found in people's body secretions. These body fluids have also been proved to spread coronavirus. Swimming pool owners should ensure that they regularly disinfect their swimming pools with chlorine to kill germs before using it.
Keep water supplies safe. COVID-19 has not yet been detected in drinking supplies but the World Health Organization (WHO), recommended that extra care should be taken when handling water supplies. Convectional and centralized disinfection should be used to kill any virus in the water before being released to the public. In cases where this is not possible people have been advised to use methods like solar and UV radiation.
Drinking disinfected water. Water is disinfected by either using unscented chlorine products or boiling the water before consumption. Bacteria and viruses including coronavirus cannot survive under the high temperatures of boiling water. Chlorine also helps in killing all germs thus making the water safe for drinking.
Avoiding crowded beaches. Although the ocean purifies its water, a crowded beach reduces that chance. Body fluids mix with ocean water that leads to the faster spread of Coronavirus an infected person comes into contact with the water.
Health facilities should ensure that the disposal of their waste products is done safely. Health care waste should not come into contact with any river/lake or ocean water as there are very high chances of this waste being infected with the coronavirus. If the waste was released into water it would lead to even a more rapid spread rate of the virus.
Proper treatment of sewage. Treatment of sewage should be done thoroughly before it is released to ensure all germs are killed and in this case coronavirus.
Water bodies purify their water as long as these systems are not overwhelmed by the pollution they work efficiently.