A team of researchers from the universities of Bath, Bristol and Southampton have warned that delivered packages should be allowed to stay for at least 72 hours before opening them to help reduce COVID-19 transmission.
These health experts working closely with Public Health England advised that deliveries should be collected with gloves and put away in somewhere safe for three days which is the expected amount of time for the virus to last on objects and surfaces.
Unknown to persons who receive delivered packages, the individual who delivers the package directly to the receiver or company workers who packaged the delivered goods may be infected.
For perishable items which ought to be eaten immediately, the practice of putting away for 72 hours will not apply. Although not a 100 percent guarantee, there are still some precautionary measures to be taken before consuming such perishable items.
•Collect the package with gloves,
•Unwrap it safely,
•Put in a clean plate,
•Wash your hands,
“What of spraying it with disinfectant or using bleach?” some people will obviously ask. It is not recommended as it cannot be relied on as an effective means of killing off the virus. Using disinfectant or bleach gives one a false assurance which in turns leaves such persons at the mercy of the virus (if present on such surfaces).
Citing a delivered laptop or phone as an example, would one spray the laptop with disinfectant or dip it inside bleach? If it is a dress, will one throw it inside bleach?
Spraying the pack of such items changes nothing. The product itself may have virus from the company.
As is associated with delivery companies, some return policies have it that malfunctioning items should returned on or before three days.
In such cases, a suggested approach should be to let the company know before purchasing, that the delivered package will not be unwrapped until after three days. Failure to read an agreement with them should deter one from going ahead to order the item.
72 hours can be such a long time, especially with the eagerness to unwrap and use newly delivered items. A choice has to be made: take the risk of exposure to coronavirus or quickly douse the eagerness and wait patiently for the recommended period of time before unwrapping the package.