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Experiment shows how fast coronavirus spreads at the table

Credit: NHK/Youtube screengrab

Belgian virologist Marc Van Ranst shared a video on Twitter that shows how fast coronavirus particles spread between people sharing a meal at the table.

From Sunday, people are allowed to invite up to four guests into their homes. However, Van Ranst shared a video of a Japanese experiment that shows how fast the virus particles spread between guests sharing a meal.

Together with several scientists, the Japanese national broadcaster NHK filmed an experiment in which ten people were invited to a buffet.

One of them was referred to as ‘infected’, and had fluorescent paint applied to one of his palms. The paint was not visible in normal daylight or artificial light. Then everyone went to the buffet to take their food and ate a meal together.

After half an hour, the normal lights were shut off and ultraviolet light was used to show that the paint particles had spread to all the people present, as well as to the cutlery and the table, and had even reached some of the guests’ faces.

Professor Hiroyuki Kunishima of St. Marianna University School of Medicine said that he hopes that the video makes people aware of the risks, and take appropriate measures, he told NHK.

“Why do virologists care so much about washing your hands? Well, because of this,” Van Ranst added to his tweet.

Maïthé Chini
The Brussels Times