Edited by: Sheera Abg Mansor
SURABAYA: A drone dispersed clouds of disinfectant by workers in protective gear is becoming a common sight in Indonesia’ Surabaya despite warnings from health experts.
But the visually-impressive measures taken to contain the fast-spreading virus COVID-19 have been criticized by disease specialists as a health hazard as well as a waste of time and resources.
Dale Fisher, an infectious diseases expert in Singapore as quoted in Reuters said the virus does not survive long in the environment and people do not generally touch the ground.
Meanwhile, a spokesman for Surabaya’s major said the use of drones for disinfection was necessary in areas with confirmed cases as the virus “can be anywhere”.
Febriadhitya Prajatara compared the benzalkonium chloride disinfectant, which can cause skin irritations in high concentrations, to “soap” and said it would help “weaken the virus so it won’t enter our body”.
While for Christopher Lee, a former deputy director general in Malaysia’s health ministry and an infectious disease specialist said such measure is not going to work as it is wasting the resources and man hours.
Another objection came from Leong Hoe Nam, an infectious disease expert at Singapore’s Mount Elizabeth hospital who claimed that mass disinfections are not effective for virus controls even though it may boost morale.