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Safety - Packages from China - Coronavirus

RedCowboy

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Biologic weapons used to infect people are bacterial, not viral. Anthrax is a great example of one of these. Getting people worried about dry parcels being viable vectors of this virus does far more harm than any good. I won't be gloving up and wearing a mask to unpack my Chinese parcels as that is just not reasonable. Won't be trying to disinfect them either.
That is wrong paul.

Biological warfare (BW)—also known as germ warfare—is the use of biological toxins or infectious agents such as bacteria, viruses, and fungi with the intent to kill or incapacitate humans, animals or plants as an act of war.

Marburg Haemorrhagic Fever (Marburg HF) is caused by Marburg virus of the filovirus family, which also includes the Ebola virus. Marburg virus is also a Category A bio-warfare agent identified by the CDC’s classification system and is hosted in African fruit bat. The virus can be isolated and produced as a biological weapon.

The Soviet Union conducted experimentations with the Marburg virus in aerosol form to transform it into a strategic-operational biological weapon. Soviet scientists were reported to have preferred Marburg to Coxiella burnetii (Q fever) as Marburg has a high case fatality rate of up to 90%.

The Bunyaviridae family of viruses includes three viruses – Nairovirus, Phlebovirus and Hantavirus. Korean haemorrhagic fever caused by Hantavirus broke out during the Korean War when an estimated 3,000 American and Korean soldiers became infected with the disease.

Bunyavirus causes human infections such as Hanta Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS), Rift Valley fever and Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever. It is transmitted by arthropods and rodents and occasionally infects humans too. The Hanta virus causing HPS causes a mortality rate of up to 50% .

AgentIncubation PeriodTriage/Provider GuidelinesTreatment Recommendations
Anthrax2–4 daysStandard universal precautionsCiprofloxacin or doxycycline
Smallpox10–12 daysAirborne/contact precautionsVaccinia immune globulin, cedofivir
Plague2–4 daysAirborne (droplet) precautionsStreptomycin or gentamicin
Tularemia3–5 daysStandard universal precautionsStreptomycin, gentamicin, ciprofloxacin
Hemorrhagic fever viruses2–21 daysAirborne/contact precautionsConsider ribavirin
Botulinum12–36 hrsStandard universal precautionsBotulinum antitoxin
Ricin*4–8 hrsStandard universal precautionsSupportive only
 
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Hap

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While as is stated above you more than likely don’t need to sanitize the package, it’s a good idea to do it anyway.

I understand paul has a good deal of knowledge on viruses but I don’t think it hurts to spend an extra 5 mins sanitizing for peace of mind :)

-Alex
 

RedCowboy

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The CDC says it's unclear if touching a surface with the virus on it then touching your mouth/eyes can cause infection.........that's the official verdict thus far ((((( UNCLEAR ))))) so spraying a bit of Lysol around when you gat a package won't hurt anything.


 

paul1598419

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I wasn't including ALL biological weapons as ricin is a nuerotoxin. Same goes for dichlorodiethyl sulfide gas, or Phosgene gas. These have been illegal for many years. Trying to weaponize small pox is beyond the ability of anyone outside of a government facility doing research into that. Hemorrhagic fevers are not viruses that anyone is trying to weaponize, as far as I know, because they include Ebola and Marburg. The ones that can be made by people who are good at this are the bacterial infective agents like anthrax. That has actually been used here in the US against government officials. But, they they blamed the wrong guy who was a lead researcher into biological weapons. He committed suicide because he was homosexual and they used that against him. The case has been closed for years now, but many believe they never found the guys behind that event.

I read every bit of the CDC's recommendations in the link you provided. Still can't find anything about possible infection from packages ANYWHERE. That is just nonscientific speculation.
 
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RedCowboy

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UNCLEAR does not equate to SAFE or UNSAFE

Unclear means it may or may not be an issue to some degree depending on factors unknown
If a infected person sneezes on a drinking glass and you drink from it 5 seconds later can you catch it ? My bet is yes, but that's no guarantee.
5 minutes later ?
30 minutes later?
10 days later ? My bet is no, but that's no guaentee.
It's unclear at this time.
 

paul1598419

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Where did you find anyone saying that infection from packages was unclear at this time? I am open to any new information. But, not your own speculation.
 

RedCowboy

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Where did you find anyone saying that infection from packages was unclear at this time? I am open to any new information. But, not your own speculation.
My own speculation HELL I posted the CDC link in post #19

Here > https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/transmission.html

Much is unknown about how 2019-nCoV, a new coronavirus, spreads. Current knowledge is largely based on what is known about similar coronaviruses. Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that are common in many different species of animals, including camels, cattle, cats, and bats. Rarely, animal coronaviruses can infect people and then spread between people such as with MERS, SARS, and now with 2019-nCoV.

Most often, spread from person-to-person happens among close contacts (about 6 feet). Person-to-person spread is thought to occur mainly via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes, similar to how influenza and other respiratory pathogens spread. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs. It’s currently unclear if a person can get 2019-nCoV by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes.

Typically, with most respiratory viruses, people are thought to be most contagious when they are most symptomatic (the sickest). With 2019-nCoV, however, there have been reportsexternal icon of spread from an infected patient with no symptoms to a close contact.

It’s important to note that how easily a virus spreads person-to-person can vary. Some viruses are highly contagious (like measles), while other viruses are less so. There is much more to learn about the transmissibility, severity, and other features associated with 2019-nCoV and investigations are ongoing. This information will further inform the risk assessment. Read the latest 2019 Novel Coronavirus, Wuhan, China situation summary.
 

paul1598419

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Yes, it is unclear if Fomites, the transmission from surfaces just infected by a person, can transmit this disease like they can with influenza, but that doesn't mean it is unclear that days old packages are a possible source for infection. It is impossible for any virus to be transmitted in this way. Fomites are wet surfaces that have been touched or sneezed on by a person with the Flu that must be touched then brought to ones eyes or mouth to gain entry and cause infection. Fomites don't last on even wet surfaces for days.
 

RedCowboy

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I would think packages are safe, but I am looking for an official opinion of the duration a virus can survive on a surface.
I did find this:

According to the Centers for Disease Control, it’s very unlikely that you could get the new coronavirus from a surface.

They explained that coronaviruses don’t survive long outside the body. While a person could carry the virus for a number of days or weeks - the virus can only survive on surfaces for a short period. The CDC estimates that the life span is “in the range of hours.”

That also means the chances are even lower for things like shipped packages. An imported good has likely been packaged and gone through a number of different environments before it winds up at your door.

The director of the CDC's Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases said Monday that “there’s likely a very, very, very low, if any risk of spread from products or packaging that is shipped” from China.
 

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Hello. Newbie to the site.
I think that the best sign that it is safe, is the fact that packages are still being shipped from China. The government may have its faults, but they are not going to risk allowing anyone in line during the process of shipping and receiving packages, even if the odds are 0.0001%, catching the virus. They would quarantine all mail from China. Plus, since a huge number of mass market goods we get are from China, if there was a chance of catching something, we would have to be careful even when unpacking high end items like electronics; which would lead to another issue big companies would never allow, as their losses would be huge. Imagine the lawsuits filed if one could prove they caught the corona virus from opening a box with a new phone, or tv, or sound system? The companies themselves would freeze their shipments from China, and quarantine what’s already here. No amount of lost sales by any company would compare to the damage the company would suffer from that kind of publicity.
I may be totally off here, and if I am, I apologize. I’m just trying to use logic and common sense, over technical and scientific information on the subject, which we don’t have all of.
 

Shiiru

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Hello. Newbie to the site.
I think that the best sign that it is safe, is the fact that packages are still being shipped from China. The government may have its faults, but they are not going to risk allowing anyone in line during the process of shipping and receiving packages, even if the odds are 0.0001%, catching the virus. They would quarantine all mail from China. Plus, since a huge number of mass market goods we get are from China, if there was a chance of catching something, we would have to be careful even when unpacking high end items like electronics; which would lead to another issue big companies would never allow, as their losses would be huge. Imagine the lawsuits filed if one could prove they caught the corona virus from opening a box with a new phone, or tv, or sound system? The companies themselves would freeze their shipments from China, and quarantine what’s already here. No amount of lost sales by any company would compare to the damage the company would suffer from that kind of publicity.
I may be totally off here, and if I am, I apologize. I’m just trying to use logic and common sense, over technical and scientific information on the subject, which we don’t have all of.
But they stopped post till 10th of February so maybe they still aren’t sure about that.
 

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But they stopped post till 10th of February so maybe they still aren’t sure about that.
Like I said, I may be totally off here, but I still wouldn’t worry.

This is from the CDC website.
“While we don’t know for sure that this virus will behave the same way as SARS and MERS, we can use the information from both of these earlier coronaviruses to guide us. In general, because of poor survivability of these coronaviruses on surfaces, there is likely very low risk of spread from products or packaging that are shipped over a period of days or weeks at ambient temperatures. Coronaviruses are generally thought to be spread most often by respiratory droplets. Currently there is no evidence to support transmission of 2019-nCoV associated with imported goods and there have not been any cases of 2019-nCoV in the United States associated with imported goods.”
 

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But they stopped post till 10th of February so maybe they still aren’t sure about that.
I did a little research, and it’s not that they’ve stopped mailing stuff from China till the tenth. The Chinese government has requested that businesses remain closed and employees at stay home, until the 10th of February. No one at work, means no one to ship. It also means less people around breathing on each other, thus hopefully preventing the virus from spreading faster. As far as the epicenter of the virus, they’ve requested people stay away from work till the 14th. I guess anything can change based on what they figure out in the next few says, but as for now, they will resume work (and I’m guessing shipments) on the 10th.
 

Shiiru

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I did a little research, and it’s not that they’ve stopped mailing stuff from China till the tenth. The Chinese government has requested that businesses remain closed and employees at stay home, until the 10th of February. No one at work, means no one to ship. It also means less people around breathing on each other, thus hopefully preventing the virus from spreading faster. As far as the epicenter of the virus, they’ve requested people stay away from work till the 14th. I guess anything can change based on what they figure out in the next few says, but as for now, they will resume work (and I’m guessing shipments) on the 10th.
Oh ok, I just saw that polish post doesn’t receive packages from china till 10th.
 

Encap

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While as is stated above you more than likely don’t need to sanitize the package, it’s a good idea to do it anyway.

I understand paul has a good deal of knowledge on viruses but I don’t think it hurts to spend an extra 5 mins sanitizing for peace of mind :)

-Alex
Exactly (y) HAP
AN ounce pr prevention is worth a pound of cure. Can't hurt, can help.
What you don't know for 100% certain , is what you don't know.
Unfortunately , what you don't know or aren't sure about can have serious and even fatal consequences in the event of a serious mistake that is not addressable/correctable--by the time you know/realize you made a error in judgement---it is to late for any correction in your approach or behavior, safety practices. Not a good idea to play 'pin the tail on the donkey" with 2019 - nCoV betacoronavirus.
Err on the side of caution if you don't know what you are doing.
 

paul1598419

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You should do whatever it takes to give you peace of mind, but even the CDC hasn't endorsed sanitizing parcels from China and the number of cases in the US remains very low with all of them coming from Wuhan or the spouses of people infected there. Fomites from all the known coronaviruses are not an easy way to become infected even when they are less than an hour old. It is transmitted by person to person contact.
 




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