From the Cleveland Clinic
Recently over 600 passengers on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship, Explorer of the Seas, fell ill and the cruise ship was forced to cut its trip short and return to Cape Liberty, New Jersey ahead of schedule. Explorer of the Seas can accommodate over 3,000 guests and includes a built-in atmospheric and oceanographic lab. CDC spokesperson, Bernadette Burden said the ship was carrying 3,050 passengers and a crew of 1,165 at the time of the outbreak. The ship departed Cape Liberty Cruise Port in Bayonne, New Jersey, on January 21 and cut its planned 10-day cruise short by two days…
1. Use bleach and water
You can catch norovirus from contaminated surfaces, and many disinfectants won’t kill it. Use bleach water. The CDC recommends a solution that contains anywhere from 5 to 25 tablespoons of household bleach per gallon of water. Stainless steel and similar surfaces need less, while more porous surfaces need more. If you don’t want to mix your own, shop for bleach-based cleaners.
2. Clean safely
Use rubber gloves or disposable latex or vinyl gloves. This will help protect you not only from the bleach but also from the norovirus itself, which can hang around on surfaces for several days. Wear a protective mask for safety — and be sure to air out the room when you finish cleaning.
3. Clean everything you touch
That includes the toilet, the floor, all counters, doorknobs, light switches, telephones, remote controls — you name it. For the best results, let the bleach water or cleaner sit on the surface for about 10 minutes before wiping it clean with paper towels or other disposable products. In addition, you may want to steam clean upholstered furniture.
4. Separate your laundry
Use gloves to handle soiled sheets, towels and clothes, and keep them separate from other laundry if possible. Wash everything in very hot water. For whites or light clothing you aren’t concerned about lightening, add a little bleach. Wash the items with detergent at the maximum available cycle length, then machine dry them.
5. Wash your hands — then wash them again
Washing your hands is a good practice both during and after any illness, particularly a hearty one like norovirus. Be sure to wash hands thoroughly after cleaning, too, so all your hard work doesn’t go to waste.
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