COVID-19 on surfaces

National Institutes of Health found that the virus can live “in aerosols for up to three hours, up to four hours on copper, up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to two to three days on plastic and stainless steel.”

More recently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) studied cruise ships, including the Diamond Princess, and found that “SARS-CoV-2 RNA was identified on a variety of surfaces in cabins of infected passengers up to 17 days after cabins were vacated on the Diamond Princess but before disinfection procedures.”

Experts agree that thorough and frequent hand washing, as well as following best practices on disinfecting and cleaning surfaces, are the best steps to prevent the spread of the virus.


CDC Preventing the Spread of Coronavirus Disease 2019 in Homes and Residential Communities
Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) COVID-19 Control and Prevention
CDC Interim Recommendations for US Households with Suspected/Confirmed Coronavirus Disease 2019
FDA on Food Safety and the Coronavirus
WebMD on Pets and the Coronavirus
CDC Coronavirus Resources