Can a CO2 Detector Protect You From the H1N1 Virus?

In June, 2009, Dr. Margaret Chan, from the World Health Organization (WHO) officially declared H1N1 as the first influenza pandemic of the 21st century. Since then, many countries have been infected with the virus and have begun to fight it in various ways.

For example, throughout the United States, the H1N1 virus is being taken seriously by all levels of government. The Center for Disease Control has issued recommendations to protect the public, including these common sense rules:

  • Cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth
  • Stay home if you get sick

Note that the first recommendation is to avoid passing the virus through airborne contact. Millions of viruses can float suspended in water droplets expelled by infected people via coughs and sneezing. According to OSHA tests, some of these droplets can travel up to 6 feet through the air before settling on surfaces. While scientists disagree as to what percentage of infections are caused by contact versus airborne infection, all agree that both play a role.

Therefore, it only makes sense that proper ventilation in government and business offices, IT parks, universities, classrooms, daycare centers, churches or anywhere that large groups congregate be considered as part of an overall intervention strategy. A continuous supply of fresh air is one of the ways to minimize airborne H1N1 transmission.

Which raises the question, how do you know if your office or classroom is getting enough fresh air? One way is by using a CO2 detector like our eSense Fresh Air Indicator . It can immediately inform you if the ventilation system has failed or is not able to adequately supply enough fresh air for the number of people in the room. When the CO2 level goes over 1,000ppm and alarm will sound, warning the occupants that adequate ventilation no longer exists.

While a CO2 detector cannot by itself prevent the spread of the H1N1 virus, dozens of scientific studies show that it can be used as part of an overall strategy to minimize the spread of the disease through airborne contact.

Posted by CO2 Meter on September 25, 2009.
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