Joggers told to keep 10 metres apart

THE Spokesman for the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) advised those jogging in the park that they should leave a distance of 10 metres from the person behind them because their heavy breathing and panting would spread droplets quite far and suggests walking with a face mask on as a better option, PostToday reported this afternoon (6.5.2020).

Dr Taweesin Visanuyothin, CCSA’s spokesman, pointed out that joggers breath through their mouth and this leads to droplets building up and then spreading up to 10 metres.

“If you want to jog make sure that the person behind is 10 metres away, if not then don’t jog because there is not enough distance and the droplets you expel will spread up to 10 metres.

“For this reason, if there are lots of people around then walk instead,” he said.

Dr Taweesin does not advise wearing a face mask when jogging because it might lead to the body not getting enough oxygen and urged people to consider walking with a face mask on instead as this is another way of exercising.

Meanwhile a recent ABC News report quoted University of Queensland infectious disease expert Charles Gilks as saying it was technically possible to catch Covid-19 from a passing jogger, but that would be extremely unlucky.

“I can’t say there are no risks, but I think they’re very, very, very small,” Professor Gilks said.

He said while joggers coughing and sneezing could pass on an infection, keeping a good distance away helped ensure that did not happen.

Mater Hospital’s infectious diseases director Paul Griffin said it would be possible to inhale virus particles from someone passing by.

“But hopefully not enough to get infected,” Associate Professor Cullen said.

Medical experts advised people to keep their distance if exercising in pairs.

“With the droplet spread, we know that you need a fairly significant interaction to be susceptible to getting this and the public health definition is 15 minutes of face-to-face or two hours in the same room.

“Clearly, if you walk past someone it’s a lot less than that.”

The ABC’s medical expert Norman Swan urged a cautious approach to exercising in public.

“I think you have to assume that as you are breathing up and breathing fast, if you’ve got [coronavirus] you’re more likely to be aerosolising it,” Dr Swan said.

That is, spraying out infected particles.

“With that bigger tidal volume, that bigger breathing … if they had Covid-19, if they had the Sars, Covid-2 virus then they could actually be spraying it out a bit more than normal,” he said.

Top: A man enjoying a morning jog at Suan Rot Fai (Railway Park) while another man walks too close behind him. Photo: PostToday

TNR staff
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