South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced a nationwide Level 2 lockdown due to the recent spike in Covid-19 cases. The country has been preparing for the third wave of outbreaks which is expected to reach its peak towards the end of June. The Western Cape, Gauteng, Free State and Eastern Cape have all experienced a daily increase in confirmed cases.
Based on these current trajectories, South Africa will be in the midst of another wave within a matter of weeks. “The Western Cape is currently facing a resurgence as it has seen increases in its case numbers every day, over the past 12 days. While this is not yet a third wave, it is the first sign that we are moving towards one,” says Western Cape Premier Alan Winde.
Widespread misinformation about the virus puts entire population groups at risk. However, most people are aware of how the virus is spread and transmitted by now. Simple actions such as wearing a mask, disinfecting surfaces and sanitising your hands regularly can keep the virus at bay. Here are some useful hygiene tips and reminders ahead of the next outbreak to keep you safe.
Avoid touching your face, especially the nose, mouth and eyes.
Try not to cough or sneeze into your hands, rather cover your nose and mouth with your elbow or a tissue.
Keep your distance from others, especially those who are showing symptoms of any flu or cold.
Wash your hands with soapy water. This is old news, but it remains the best line of defence. Do this after touching objects, people or surfaces and before preparing food or touching your face, if it's really necessary.
Use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser and rub your hands until they feel dry.
Did you know that cold and warm water are equally effective at killing viruses and bacteria? No matter the water temperature, the key is soap!
Clean and disinfect all high-touch surfaces and objects on a regular basis. These include all door handles, windows, chairs, tables, taps, fridges, cupboard doors, light switches, towels, phones, computers, tablets, remote controls, game controllers and toys.
Open windows to ensure good ventilation throughout the house, even if it’s cold.
Use alcohol-based cleaning products or those that are effective at killing viruses and bacteria. Green dishwashing liquid is good at killing viruses, so kitchen counters can be wiped down with soapy water. Bleach and strong disinfectants can be used, but avoid pouring these on any surfaces that are used to prepare food. Do not use vinegar and other homemade cleaning products.
Do not wipe off the cleaning products as soon as they’ve been applied to these surfaces. Let them sit for a couple of minutes to give them time to work. Always read the directions on the bottle.
It’s good practice to remove your shoes and change into clean clothes when you get home after being in a public space.
Avoid shaking dirty laundry as this could disperse the virus through the air. Be sure to wash laundry thoroughly and allow it to dry completely. A tumble dryer or iron can be used to heat up the laundry, which may help to kill the virus. Wash and disinfect your laundry bag or basket too.
While there is no reputable evidence that people can get Covid-19 from touching foods that have been exposed to the virus, it is still best to wash your hands and the food packaging before cooking meals. When it comes to deliveries of takeaways, there is definitely a greater risk of becoming infected after touching the paper bag or box.
Remove and dispose of any unnecessary food packaging then wash your hands immediately.
Dispose of food containers and packaging in a dustbin with a lid.
Wipe down plastic bottles, cans and tins with disinfectant before opening or using them.
Rinse unpackaged fruit and vegetables thoroughly before consuming.
Wash your hands before eating. This is a general hygiene practice that should always be observed, regardless of a pandemic.
These hygiene tips will help you to stay protected amid the next wave of Covid-19 infections. South Africa has had over 1,6 million cases, with more than 1,5 million recoveries. The country had administered around 648 000 doses of the vaccine at the end of May 2021. For your professional household cleaning needs, contact IWESCO today.
IWESCO offers specialised cleaning and waste control services to industrial and commercial customers in South Africa. These services are aimed at minimising our customers’ impact on the environment. Our services also include pest control, garden maintenance, fogging and disinfecting. Our staff are highly trained to offer the most professional services. IWESCO is a Level 2 B-BBEE supplier with ISO 14001 certification for environmental management.
We are a one-stop shop for all your contract cleaning and waste control needs and have a national footprint. Our head office is located in Tshwane but we can provide services to any industrial and commercial client in the major metropolitan areas around South Africa, including Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban, Port Elizabeth, Mbombela and more.