Study Finds Coronavirus Spread Could Be Cut By Speaking Quietly

(Photo: Shutterstock/ Kamil Macniak)

Katie Jerkovich Entertainment Reporter
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A new study by researchers at the University of Davis in California found that the spread of the coronavirus could be cut by speaking quietly.

Speaking in an advance of a paper showing the results of the recent study, researchers said they found that speaking at a lower decibel could reduce the spread of COVID-19 in indoor places like restaurants and hospitals, according to Reuters in piece published Thursday. (RELATED: 106-Year-Old Woman Beats Coronavirus In Britain, Discharged From Hospital)

“The results suggest that public health authorities should consider implementing ‘quiet zones’ in high-risk indoor environments, such as hospital waiting rooms or dining facilities,” six researchers from the university wrote.  (RELATED: 102-Year-Old Italian Woman Makes Miraculous Coronavirus Recovery After 20-Day Hospitalization)

According to the report:

Microscopic droplets ejected while speaking evaporate to leave behind aerosol particles big enough to carry viable virus, the paper showed. An increase of about 35 decibels in loudness, or the difference between whispering and shouting, boosts the particle emission rate by 50 times.

Researchers said they found that lowering the speech volume 6 decibels was equal to having double the ventilation in an indoor location to prevent the spread of the virus. A typical conversation is usually above the 10-decibel level, with the ambient level of noise in restaurants close to 70.

“Not all indoor environments are equal in terms of aerosol transmission risk,”  researcher William Ristenpart shared.

“A crowded but quiet classroom is much less dangerous than an uncrowded karaoke bar where patrons are socially distanced but talking and singing over loud music,” he added.