Last night, Channel 4 aired a special programme Coronavirus: Can You Avoid It which looked into the current outbreak of COVID-19, the coronavirus. It explored how the virus is transmitted and what you can do to stay safe. But as the UK is yet to reach its peak, the hour-long instalment was eye-opening for viewers as they revealed results from exclusive experiments which showcased how exposed people are to the potentially deadly.
Note: The show was filmed before the government’s restrictions on lockdown came into force.
“Our human immune systems have never seen this virus before, so none of us are immune to it, we are all susceptible to infection,” an expert told the presenter who added in a voice-over: “COVID-19 is the most infectious respiratory virus in humans since the Spanish flue pandemic a century ago. It’s rate of transmission is more than double of seasonal flu”.
But, it gave a stark warning, ultimately it came down to each individual and their actions to save themselves and their families.
And the programme then went onto explain how the virus spreads around public spaces, such as public transport, offices and even in the home.
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Scenes showed the presenter and expert heading into a family home to demonstrate if the virus were to enter the home, how it would spread around.
Viewers saw a dye used to simulate the virus, to see how it could be transmitted around the home if you were to come into contact with it on your hands.
UV light was used to locate the virus’ transmission path.
The expert applied a gel to everyone’s hands and then they were told to go back into the house and carry on with their day.
Using a UV torch, they shone the light on a door handle, and the virus was instantly visible.
“If that was a virus and they touched the door handles with their hands, the virus wouldn’t be transferred,” the expert said.
“We’re dependant on everybody to wash their hands because if one person if washing their hands and doing a good job of removing the virus from their hands, that’s great, but if somebody else hasn’t washed their hands, then you’re just picking it up again,” she continued to explain.
In under an hour, the gel had been left on the fridge door, the bottle of milk inside, the kettle and cutlery.
Light switches and the surrounding wall were particularly covered by the gel.
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“We’ve really just demonstrated the extent to which contaminated hands can spread to different surfaces around the house,” the presenter remarked.
“People will have different particles on their hands from sneezing into them to coughing into them. And if they don’t wash their hands thoroughly, it can spread so easily,” the expert revealed.
“Washing our hands regularly is the single most important thing we can do,” the presenter added.
Many viewers took to Twitter to praise the show.
One said: “#StopTheSpread Channel 4 was worth a watch! It basically explains HOW VIRUSES ARE SPREAD! #BeSafeStayHome.”
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“Brilliant programme on Channel 4 about how we spread coronavirus Watch it Learn more Know more Save lives and Save the NHS @ Coronavirus can you avoid it #stopthespread,” another added.
Someone else remarked: “Watching a very informative programme on #channel4 that’s showing how easily the virus spreads. #stopthespread.”
Coronavirus: Can I Avoid It? is available to watch on Channel 4 on Demand.
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