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PANDEMIC SAFETY


Climbing V


The New Clean


Could Coronavirus be lingering in your kit after a climbing session, and to what extent can you get rid of it? Is it necessary or even possible to disinfect this sort of equipment? What about climbing walls? Dr Alexandra Schweikart, pro climber and specialist in materials, has the answers.


iruses are like climbing in that there can only be risk reduction, and zero risk cannot be defined: nobody can measure a single virus. Professor Marcel Leist, a specialist in method development and evaluation in the


medical field, explains: “Viral infection is a dosage issue; the less of it there is (but it does not have to be zero), the less likely you are to become infected”.


If you go climbing in the Danube Valley today you’ll have a much higher risk of getting a Borrelia infection with complications because of the ticks than getting sick with Covid-19. However, the


latter is currently more present in our perception. When deciding whether to go climbing and with whom, it’s important to know that, according to current knowledge, the average time between infection with Coronavirus and the onset of symptoms is five to six days, but the period ranges from one to 14 days.


Also, an infected person can be contagious two days before the onset of symptoms and an infected person is particularly infectious on the day before the onset of symptoms. And, surprisingly, many infected people (about 43%) have no symptoms at all. It’s very hard to be sure, then that we, or others, are not (over)carriers.


60 | CLIMB. WALK. JOIN.


PHOTO: SHUTTERSTOCK


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