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Can Coronavirus Survive on Clothing and Textiles?

Coronavirus has brought most of the world to a standstill. Huge countries like Italy, Spain, France and the UK are on lockdown in an attempt to stop the virus from spreading and completely overwhelming their health resources.

Since the first case was reported in China in January, scientists around the world have been frantically trying to establish the facts about the virus and create a vaccine in order to protect the population.

There are many aspects of the pandemic that we know to be true. We know it is potentially fatal for those over 70 and those with underlying health conditions. We also know that the main symptoms are a fever and a consistent cough and that Covid-19 spreads like wildfire. Deaths double every three to six days.

However, there are also elements to this new virus that we do not know the answers to. We know the first outbreak happened in China, but how was it created? Once you’ve had it, can you catch it again? How long will it take before we can create a vaccine to protect the masses from its effects? When will life return to some sort of normality?

These are all important questions that people want answers to, but the main emphasis of world governments now is to limit its spread and find a vaccine. But do we know everything about how the virus spreads?

We are being urged to catch our coughs and sneezes, whether that be with a tissue, a hankie or the inside of your arm. But does coronavirus live on textiles and clothes?

Despite thorough investigations, the results so far have proved inconclusive. Infectious disease expert Amesh A. Adalja, MD, senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security in Maryland, was recently quoted as saying: “I suspect that you can find viability of the virus for several hours to maybe a day on clothes. It depends largely on the environmental conditions—temperature and humidity impact the growth of the virus.”

But he added that he did not believe clothes were a major carrier of the virus.

This view is echoed by Dr Akash Patel, a GP and Medical Director at MyHealthcareClinic, who said the official length of time the virus can live on fabrics is still unknown.

He said: “We are still continuing to find out more about the coronavirus day by day, there is currently not enough research to say with any certainty how long the coronavirus will live on clothing.”

He added: “Preliminary research has suggested the virus can survive longer on harder surfaces, like plastic and metal, this could be from a few hours to several days but no clear research on fabrics like clothing. However, it is likely that the virus will not survive as long on soft surfaces.”

We know towels and clothes can spread germs, particularly when they are shared items or when infected people touch the products. But can you catch coronavirus from clothes and textiles? The scientific answer so far is that the chances are slim, but it’s always best to be safe than sorry.

At Lindstrom we go to great lengths to ensure the clothes supplied in our rental service are not just clean, but hygienically clean. We wash all workwear with high hygiene standards separately in their own machines. We use a sufficiently high washing temperature and disinfectant washing chemicals to remove all pathogens for the garments.

Our food hygiene PPE, construction and hi-vis uniforms all undergo the same rigorous cleaning methods to ensure your staff start each and every day with a uniform that is hygienically clean and looks the business. We also use separate packing for cleaned, hygienic workwear when they are delivered to you. This ensures the workwear will not get contaminated while in transportation.

For more details on our exceptional workwear rental and laundry service, and how it can benefit you and your business, speak to our sales team today on 01234 480367 or email info.uk@lindstromgroup.com

Lindström Group