Coronavirus could live up to three days on a plastic or stainless steel doorknob, researchers found.
A preliminary study released last week also showed that the virus could be aerosolized, meaning it could potentially live in the air. It could live up to three days on some surfaces.
Though it’s widely acknowledged that coronavirus could be spread via respiratory droplet — the result of coughing or sneezing — there’s not much information yet on how the virus lives on surfaces or in the air.
The new research could inform cleaning recommendations and other measures taken to reduce community spread.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend routine cleaning of high-touch surfaces, like door handles, high-backed chairs, light switches and remote controls.
The study, released last week, is not yet peer-reviewed. That means that other experts have not had the chance to check the quality of the research, and its not advised that doctors use it in a clinical setting. But as people try to cope with the disease, it’s being widely read.
Here’s how long the study indicated the virus could live on various surfaces:
The air: Researchers found the virus could be detected in aerosols up to 4 hours after it was sprayed.
Copper: Up to 4 hours
Cardboard: Up to 24 hours
Plastic: 2-3 days
Stainless steel: 2-3 days