Widely used N95 respirators filter out most airborne particles down to 0.3 microns in diameter. The coronavirus is .2 microns in diameter. So the coronavirus is smaller than .3 microns in diameter and can penetrate the N95 respirator filter. There is no 100% guarantee that a mask will capture every virus that lands on your filter. At .1 microns or less it is already very hard if not realistically impossible to breathe normally through a filter.
However, a mask worn by carriers or potential carriers of the coronavirus will substantially reduce the virus particles emanating from their breath, especially when they sneeze or cough, so humans surrounding them are less likely to inhale the virus from the carrier. Since the breath water from the lungs lodges in the face mask, it is a decent trap for small coronavirus particles which wind up mostly lodging in the moist mask. So carriers, humans venturing into public places, or potential carriers of the virus should definitely be required to wear a filtering mask of some kind. Some kind of mask is better than none at all since even face fitting masks are not airtight where they contact the facial skin area and mostly around the nose contact border.
Then there is the question of the virus being transmitted from contaminated surfaces and by touch, which no scientific study has determined as of yet. Soap and alcohol seem to kill the virus, so wearing protective gloves which are disinfected on a regular basis by using a soap or alcohol soaking may be an acceptable solution for the average human.
Trying to use only one hand and fingers to touch potentially contaminated surfaces is also advisable so that you can drive your car, open the car door, and insert keys with the clean hand on the steering wheel to avoid contaminating the car also. The contaminated glove hand can be sterilized on a daily basis when not in use. In the supermarket it is wise to use only your left or right glove covered hand to steer the cart and keep the other hand free of contamination for use on your personal property.
If everyone wore a mask close to N95 efficiency and wore easily disinfected latex or rubber gloves, especially the known carriers or potential carriers which have or haven’t had contact with virus-infected humans, then distancing rules of six feet or so wouldn’t be necessary. We could stop the outrageous unemployment in our economy and get back to business as usual and permit bigger crowds to gather socially and benefit everyone economically.
With about 40% of the population living from paycheck to paycheck, the nation can’t afford over 40% unemployment for two or more months, which is what a national lockdown realistically means. Stop panicking, take the minimal protective actions suggested above and get back to work. If you can’t buy a mask, then try making one yourself, which is what I am doing with .3-micron filter paper covered by fabric and tied with a string or rubber band.
The IRS does not have direct deposit accounts for most working citizens and none for illegals. Already check printing capability for millions of citizens with only an address will take months to process and requests for unemployment payments is already delaying and overstressing the bureaucracy with limited government employees and limited online capacity. These are only some of the bureaucratic bottlenecks which threaten getting federal money to those who need it the most and most urgently.
It’s the economy, stupid, not the idiotic directives of know-nothing politicians, local, statewide, or national. Delaying economic recovery will just result in horrific administrative bottlenecks in distributing cash to those who really need it, the humans living from paycheck to paycheck and the working illegals. Yes, the big businesses and government bureaucrats will do just fine no matter what, but the economic chaos created by no money to spend for months for small businesses and a majority of working citizens because of bureaucratic inefficiency and incompetence, will not be a pretty sight.
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