A recent study on COVID 19 by Chinese researchers has found that the virus spreads fastest among people who use common toilets. According to the findings, particles of COVID 19 can rise upto two feet (in the air ) in less than six seconds while flushing toilets or urinals and this can potentially infect the unsuspecting users.
Flushing of toilets, involves certain gas and liquid interfaces, which can cause large amounts of aerosol particle release.
Particles of COVID 19 can rise upto two feet in the air in less than 6 seconds while flushing toiletsThese findings have been corrobated by a clinical study recently conducted in Assam. The study concluded that a greater number of people who undergo institutional quarantine contract the virus in comparison to people who undergo home quarantine. This is because shared toilets are the reality of many quarantine centres. Incidentally, around 40,000 people under home quarantine were monitored for this study (from May to July) and it was found that a whopping 82% percent of asymptomatic and
symptomatic patients were using common toilets at home. This study was led by Dr Gayatri Gogoi, faculty from Assam Medical College and Dr Dhananjay Ghanwat, Superintendent of Police, Dhemaji.
In this regard one must not discount the central government's initiative of constructing household toilets. Because of this initiative a huge proportion of Indian homes now atleast have toilets and do not rely on public toilets and open defecation spaces. The state government's endeavour to provide individual toilets in some of the recently constructed COVID care centres is also very laudable.