SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) – A new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicates that the coronavirus can travel through the air at least 13 feet, which is more than twice as far as social distancing guidelines.
The research was recently published by a team at the Academy of Military Medical Sciences in the federal agency’s Emerging Infectious Diseases Journal.
“The aerosol distribution characteristics … indicate that the transmission distance of [COVID-19] might be 4 m (more than 13 feet) ” the report says.
Additionally, the research found that the virus can linger on shoes and function as carriers of the coronavirus.
“Furthermore, half of the samples from the soles of the ICU medical staff shoes tested positive,” the researchers wrote of samples taken at Huoshenshan Hospital in Wuhan, China. “Therefore, the soles of medical staff shoes might function as carriers.”
High levels of the virus were also found on frequently touched surfaces such as trashcans, bed rails, and computer mice.
The CDC recommends 6 feet for social distancing, while the World Health Organization claims 3 feet should be enough, less than a quarter of the distance the current study suggests it spreads.
The coronavirus has infected more than 1.85 million people and killed at least 114,000 worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University.
At least 557,000 cases and more than 22,000 coronavirus-related deaths have been recorded in the United States. New York state alone has more cases than any country.