From Uche Uche, Damaturu
Growing evidence, according to Nature Briefing, suggests that there will be bigger COVID-19 outbreaks in winter, on the basis of what is known about how the virus spreads and how people behave in colder months.
Laboratory experiments have revealed that SARS-CoV-2 favours cold, dry conditions, particularly out of direct sunlight. And during winter, people will more often interact indoors in places with poor ventilation.
But overall, seasonal variability is “a small drop in the pan” compared with the main driver of increased spread, which is that so many people are vulnerable to infection — so people in places that are going into summer shouldn’t be complacent either.
“By far the biggest factor that will affect the size of an outbreak will be control measures such as social distancing and mask wearing,” says epidemiologist Rachel Baker.