Professor Tony Blakely from the Australian National University, said that it’s highly unlikely that the virus is travelling through the air conditioning system in hotels

Deadly Covid-19 mutations are slipping between hotel rooms thanks to opposing air pressures, a scientist has claimed.  

Professor Tony Blakely from the Australian National University, said that it’s highly unlikely that the virus is travelling through the air conditioning system in hotels.

Instead, he explained that the virus can ‘jump the corridor’ between rooms thanks to different pressure and temperatures inside the room and outside in the corridor.

This means when the door is open, the air is pushed together and mixes – so the key is to never open nearby doors at the same time.

‘If somebody at the opposite side opens the door at the same time…a whole lot of droplets and particles could move up to two metres,’ Professor Blakely told 3AW.

‘I think there is a need to tweak what we do, so two doors don’t open at the same time if they’re close to each other.’

The professor explained that with different temperatures inside the room and outside in the corridor, the air mixes when doors are opened (pictured, meal trays outside hotel quarantine in Sydney)

Iga Swiatek of Poland and Anastasija Sevastova of Latvia leave the Covid-19 testing station as tennis players and officials for the Australian Open wait to be tested for Covid-19

To help prevent Covid-19 spreading to others in hotel quarantine or security, Professor Blakely also suggests extra protection for workers.

The mutant Covid strain wreaking havoc on the UK is thought to have spread between two families in Victoria’s hotel quarantine, despite them being in different rooms.

An urgent investigation is now underway after the same mutant strain variant spread from one group to another on the same floor of the Park Royal hotel.

The travellers have since been moved to the Alfred Health Hotel to isolate.

A woman in her 60s tested positive for the UK strain after a family of five tested positive just three days earlier.

The family was staying in the room opposite the woman on the same floor. 

An officer is seen standing guard outside the Grand Hyatt hotel as tennis players and officials arrive for a two-week quarantine period ahead of the Australian Open tennis tournament, in Melbourne 

An urgent investigation is now underway after the mutant strain spread from one group to another on the same floor of the Park Royal hotel in Melbourne, amid fears it went through the ventilation system

What is the ‘mutant’ UK strain of COVID? It is NOT thought to make people sicker than than the previously dominant SARS-CoV-2But it is far more transmissable, up to 50% more infectiousIt is worse because its higher rate of infectiousness could lead to more deathsCould be resistant to vaccines and able to evade the immune system New strain responsible for 80% of positive tests in LondonIt has spread to 45 countries so far and was first detected in the UK in September 2020Its scientific name is COVID B117

She arrived from Malaysia on January 11 and tested negative on her third and 11th day in quarantine but chose to stay on for another two weeks when her husband arrived on January 16. 

She then tested positive for the UK strain of the virus on January 28.

Earlier, the family of five all tested positive on January 24 after arriving from Nigeria four days earlier.

The two parents are aged in their 40s and they have three children aged one, four and seven.  

Emergency Services Minister Lisa Neville said the virus was so virulent that it could have travelled between the two groups when one opened the door for meals, or put their laundry out. 

‘It’s as if people have been in the same room together,’ Ms Neville said. 

‘The viral load in the room of the family of five (was high) because four of them, now five of them, have the virus.

‘There are cameras right near these rooms that indicate there have been no breaches of protocols either by the families leaving rooms or crossing rooms or by staff at any time.’

Around 100 staff members are now in isolation and have been tested.

Investigations into how the two groups contracted the virus are now being carried out including assessing CCTV. 

Investigations into how the two groups contracted the virus are now being carried out including assessing CCTV (pictured health workers at View Hotel in Melbourne)

The advice comes after a Melbourne quarantine worker tested also positive to the UK mutant Covid-19 strain and threw the Australian Open into chaos. 

Tennis Australia boss Craig Tiley announced on Friday morning that the results are back for almost all of the 507 players and officials tested for coronavirus on Thursday.

Anyone who had contact with the staffer, a 26-year-old local working at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, had been forced to isolate and get tested.

Everyone has tested negative so far with just 12 results pending from those tested late on Thursday night.

‘Hopefully we’ll get the positive outcome in the next few hours that all tests are negative,’ Tiley told Melbourne radio station 3AW. 

‘It hasn’t been an easy exercise but we’re very pleased with the outcome so far.’ 

The news comes as Victoria reported zero new locally acquired cases on Friday, despite 14,612 tests in the last 24 hours.

Victorian health officials confirmed the infected staffer, called a ‘model’ employee who did not breach any health protocol, has the highly contagious UK strain of the virus.  

MELBOURNE VENUES ON ALERT

A number of venues have been put on alert, with customers and staff told to get tested immediately and self-isolate until they get a negative result.

Monday, February 1:

– Bunnings: Springvale – 11:28am to 12:15pm

-Nakama Workshop, Clayton South,  11.15am to noon 

– Golf Academy: Heatherton – 5:19pm to 6:35pm

 -Lululemon: DFO Moorabbin Airport- 5pm to 5.45pm

 -Sharetea: Springvale: 6:50pm to 7:30pm

-Woolworths:  Springvale- 6:30pm to 7:30pm

Sunday, January 31:

– Northpoint Café: Brighton – 8:10am to 9:30am

– Kmart: Parkmore Keysborough Shopping Centre – 4pm to 5pm

 – Kmart: Brandon Park,  4:35pm to 5:10pm

– Coles: Springvale,  5pm to 6pm

Saturday, January 30:

– Club Noble: Noble Park – 2:36pm to 3:30pm

– Aces Sporting Club (Driving Range): Keysborough – 10pm to 11:15pm 

Friday, January 29:

-Exford Hotel bottle shop, Melbourne- 11pm to 11.35pm  

-Kebab Kingz: West Melbourne-  23:24pm to 00:15am

 



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