Disinfecting Your World

Dear Fellow Survivalist;

As the coronavirus saga has unfolded, it has become clear that it’s not going to end quickly. If anything, we can expect things to get worse, before they get better. That’s become imminently clear as the US became the world’s epicenter for the disease, surpassing the number of cases officially reported in China and ahead of Italy.

The key at this point in time is to slow the spread of the disease, rather than trying to stop it. Stopping it is probably impossible, but if the actions called for by our government can slow the spread of the disease, then it will lower the mortality rate, because our medical community will be better able to treat all the people who become infected.

As best as I can tell, the government is doing the right things. Of course, there’s really no way of telling if they are doing the right things, until we see how everything pans out. Even then, there will be some saying that the government took actions that were too restrictive and others who will say that the actions weren’t restrictive enough. It’s a no-win for those making the decisions, and I, for one, am glad I’m not sitting in the driver’s seat.

The whole situation has raised the level of institutional paranoia by at least a couple of notches. Even so, I have to ask myself, “Am I being paranoid enough?”

We’re all being told to wash our hands often, avoid touching our faces and practice social distancing. That’s all good. Even so, it doesn’t do a thing to protect us from the viruses that may be getting on things we bring home from the grocery store or have shipped to our homes. If someone who is infected, but doesn’t know it, coughs and the droplets land on the packages of things we buy, we are literally bringing that virus right into our homes, without knowing it.

It’s hard to battle against an enemy that you can’t even see, yet that’s what we’re faced with doing. The only way we can, is to assume that everything is contaminated and treat it as such. This means decontaminating everything we bring into our homes.

Fortunately, it’s not all that hard to disinfect these things. We just need some disinfectant spray, paper towels and two areas that have been cleared and disinfected. One of those areas is going to be used for the purchases which haven’t yet been disinfected and the other will be used for those that have. Soak a wad of paper towels with disinfectant, to the point where it can just barely be squeezed out.

  • For hard packages, cans, bottles, boxes and plastic bags, wipe them down with the disinfected paper towels
  • For items in boxes, which have a bag inside, such as breakfast cereal, you can open the box and dump out the bag, it will be safe
  • Items where it might be difficult to clean the packaging (like meat from the butcher or bread) can better be dealt with by opening the package and putting the contents into a plastic container for storage
  • Fruits and vegetables, whether packed in net bags or bagged by you can be dumped into the sink and washed, just like washing your hands
  • Takeout food can be dealt with by just dumping it out of the package onto a plate. The hot food will be safe
  • Items in clamshell packaging are hard to clean. It’s better to just open the package and get the item out of it
  • Anything you have ordered online will come in a box that may be contaminated. Start by decontaminating that box, then open it to remove the item(s). Those packages may be contaminated too, if they were handled by someone who is infected. So those packages also need to be decontaminated, before moving it over to the safe area.

Throughout this process, you want to be sure to only touch the outside of the containers, not the contents. If you touch the outside, then the contents, there’s a possibility of you transferring the virus with your hands. Once you are done and have disposed of the packaging, be sure to disinfect your hands thoroughly.

Once you’ve disinfected everything, dispose of the bags and packaging in the outside trash can. Then come back in and disinfect the whole area you were working in. Then, and only then, it’s safe to put your purchases away.

One last thing; make sure that the clothing that you wore makes it into the wash; don’t wear it again. There’s always a chance that the virus got from one of those packages or bags onto your clothing.

I realize this sounds like a lot; but it really doesn’t take all that long to do. If it will protect your family, isn’t that worth it? Not really much different than keeping your powder dry and your survival equipment close at hand.

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