Coronavirus ‘can survive for 28 days on surfaces’: study

The coronavirus that causes Covid-19 can survive on items such as banknotes and phones for up to 28 days in cool, dark conditions, according to a study by Australia’s national science agency.

Researchers at CSIRO’s disease preparedness centre tested the longevity of SARS-CoV-2 in the dark at three temperatures, showing survival rates decreased as conditions became hotter, the agency said Monday.

The scientists found that at 20 degrees Celsius (68 degrees Fahrenheit), SARS-CoV-2 was “extremely robust” on smooth surfaces — like mobile phone screens — surviving for 28 days on glass, steel and plastic banknotes.

The coronavirus that causes Covid-19 can survive on items such as banknotes and phones for up to 28 days in cool, dark conditions, according to a study by Australia’s national science agency.

Researchers at CSIRO’s disease preparedness centre tested the longevity of SARS-CoV-2 in the dark at three temperatures, showing survival rates decreased as conditions became hotter, the agency said Monday.

The scientists found that at 20 degrees Celsius (68 degrees Fahrenheit), SARS-CoV-2 was “extremely robust” on smooth surfaces — like mobile phone screens — surviving for 28 days on glass, steel and plastic banknotes.

“This doesn’t mean to say that that amount of virus would be capable of infecting someone,” he told public broadcaster ABC.

He added that if a person was “careless with these materials and touched them and then licked your hands or touched your eyes or your nose, you might well get infected upwards of two weeks after they had been contaminated”. (AFP| Holly ROBERTSON)

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