Earth Day 2020: More Littering of Contaminated Gloves and Masks From the 2019 Novel Coronavirus

Since this article pertaining to stopping the spread of littering contaminated gloves and masks appeared here at The Gate on Sunday, April 19, 2020 — which was only three days ago — readers have not only been alerting me of their sightings of discarded gloves and masks; but I have been finding more of them myself.

Earth Day 2020: More Littering of Contaminated Gloves and Masks From the 2019 Novel Coronavirus

In an effort to slow its spread in the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued an advisory on Friday, April 3, 2020 with the recommendation of covering your face with a simple cloth face covering — such as a scarf as one of many examples — which was initially different than what both the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization previously advised.

Ever since the recommendation to wear something to cover a face during the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic was endorsed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, substantially more people started to wear not only masks and other face coverings; but also gloves as well…

…and as a result, a fairly new problem is occurring, as instead of following the guidelines of what to properly do after wearing masks and gloves, some people are simply tossing them onto the ground and littering the landscape.

mask

Photograph ©2020 by Brian Cohen.

I have been walking many miles during the current 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic, and I started to notice discarded gloves and masks on the ground…

mask

Photograph ©2020 by Brian Cohen.

…such as in the grass right by a sidewalk; or on the side of a roadway.

The proper discarding of a mask is to grab it by the strands which wrap around the ears and discard it immediately in a closed bin; and then afterwards, clean hands with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.

Improperly discarding a glove or a mask could possibly expose other people to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus, which potentially defeats the purpose of wearing a glove or a mask in the first place…

mask

Photograph ©2020 by Brian Cohen.

…not to mention that simply throwing gloves or masks on the ground is a form of littering.

Summary

The photographs of the same discarded mask which were used in this article only illustrated part of the problem, as I have seen more gloves, masks, and other protective items improperly discarded elsewhere.

If you are going to use a mask or gloves, please discard them properly to help prevent the spread of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus. Simply throwing them on the ground is disgusting, only potentially creates new issues — such as potentially spreading the 2019 Novel Coronavirus in a selfishly different and discourteous way; as well as littering, which is bad for the environment — and does not help to solve the original problem…

…especially if the glove, mask, or other protective item is not biodegradable.

This article is the latest in a series pertaining to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus — which is also known as COVID-19 or 2019-nCoV or SARS-CoV-2 or HCoV-19 or severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 — pandemic in an effort to get the facts out with information derived from reliable sources…

…as well as attempt to maintain a reasoned and sensible ongoing discussion towards how to resolve this pandemic.

Other articles at The Gate which pertain to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus include:

All photographs ©2020 by Brian Cohen.

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