New studies from Swansea University has revealed the effectiveness of opening car windows to minimise the risk of catching COVID-19.
The new research shown that opening windows in a moving car helps to create a through-draught which sucks out the COVID particles. The speed at which you are travelling, dictates which windows you should open.
For speeds below 30mph, keeping all windows in the vehicle down is the most beneficial for expelling particles.
For faster speeds, like on a motorway, opening two diagonal windows becomes the optimal method.
The airborne transmission of COVID-19 will usually happen in two key ways. The first being through larger liquid droplets that are usually coughed out, the other way is through smaller liquid droplets that are emitted in an aerosol spray when breathing.
This aerosol spray evaporates in the air and can stay circulating in the surrounding environment for up to an hour after its release. By opening windows in your vehicle these particles can easily be pulled out of the car.
When driving slowly the difference in air pressure is much lower than at higher speeds. This is why all windows need to be opened in order to achieve maximum ventilation.
At higher speeds, the diagonal opening of windows creates a ‘targeted tunnel effect’ which is extremely effective at pulling particles out of the vehicle.
This method is so effective that it only needs to be carried out for around 10 seconds every 10 minutes or so.
Further research from the University showed that sitting in the front seats of a vehicle is better than being in the back, and if you are in the back it is better to sit on the seat across from the window that is being opened.
The research also showed that wearing a face mask helped to reduce the emission of COVID-19 by 90% and the passenger intake of the virus reduced by 70%.