An alarming scientific study that was carried out in 39 countries, calculated the time that the coronavirus survives in the water, which would affect the possibility of being infected by sewage or stagnant water sources.
The research was led by a team of Polish and British researchers who discovered that SARS-CoV-2 can survive in water for up to 25 days, which can translate into a serious risk of contagion, according to the draft of their study published in the medRxiv medical portal.
The work, which has yet to be reviewed in pairs, affirms that rivers and other bodies of water contaminated with human fecal matter can present a concentration of 100 copies of the virus for every 100 milliliters of water.
“Viral pathogens that can be transmitted through water carry a health risk, as defined by the WHO, including adenoviruses, astroviruses, hepatitis A and E, rotaviruses, noroviruses, and other enteroviruses. Survival of a large family of coronaviruses in water supply systems has already been established, viral loads in untreated sewage have been identified, and their relationship to population infection rates. <…> Taken together, this indicates that the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus can survive in water, and viral loads in untreated wastewater are likely to be high in countries most susceptible to infection, “the scientists write.
The authors determined the upper and lower limits for the SARS-CoV-2 concentration in the first 24 hours after the sewage spill. In calculating, the scientists assumed that the infection requires 100 virus particles per 100 milliliters of water.
Countries with high water consumption and high dilution of wastewater are some such as Canada and Norway. The highest rates were registered in countries such as Germany, the United Kingdom, Spain and Morocco, where water consumption was low or medium, but the dilution was similar.
The study argues that, “This is equivalent to one or two sips of water. Meanwhile, while you are directly in the river or lake for 45 minutes, you can swallow three times as much, about 280 milliliters. Also, animals that eat grass or shrubs that grow in areas contaminated with such water may be at risk. ”