Coronavirus. Nothing has caused more commotion and fear during the first few months of the new year. The last thing that was expected was for a global virus to hit and hit hard. As spring break approaches, many are considering limiting travel plans because of the coronavirus and its resulting disease, COVID-19.
As of March 7, there have been over 400 cases of the virus reported in the U.S. alone, hundreds of thousands worldwide with the number rapidly increasing day by day.
With numbers doubling within days, the U.S. health department is expecting the number to grow to half a million within the next few weeks.
Students long await this marvelous spring break to take a week off of their studies. It is also a week in which limits are nonexistent. As the news regarding this virus continues to shock the world, spring break 2020 might not be what students expected.
Most spring break destinations attract large crowds who are interacting with each other nonstop. The virus is easily spread and could be contagious simply by being too close to someone who is contaminated.
Tracy Smith who is an Environmental Health and Safety Director from Marshall University had some suggestions for students who have plans to travel during spring break.
Smith said, “We want them to be aware of the situation, practice good hand hygiene, hand washing, use hand sanitizers. We want them to limit their contact as much as possible in large groups.”
In an environment with such high interaction it is impossible to not be in constant touch and communication with those around you, making it inevitable for such a strong virus to not be instantly transferred from one person to another.
Terry Nguyen, who writes for Vox.com, discussed the impact of coronavirus on air travel. Nguyen reported that U.S airlines such as American, Alaska, Delta, JetBlue and United are waiving airline fares and canceling domestic flights as the coronavirus spreads.
Many students who study away from home use this break to fly back to their families and spend some time with their loved ones. Due to this virus, some will have to wait for summer break to do so, and that is if this outbreak is controlled by then.
The coronavirus has already made a massive impact around the world. Nobody knows what to expect. All there is to do is take necessary precautions to prevent the virus from taking a toll on someone else’s life.
Ana Delgadillo is a staff writer for The Express. Follow her at @aaanakd.