How to sanitize your deliveries during the coronavirus pandemic

HOUSTON – Whether it’s food delivery, groceries, or something ordered from Amazon, packages were put together at some other location and passed through many hands before arriving at your doorstep.

Precautions for opening any type of package safely

  • Make sure items are left at the door. A lot of delivery services do this anyway, but it can’t hurt to write it in the special instructions.
  • Ask the delivery person to leave the package and knock, so they leave before the package is retrieved. That’s good social distancing!

According to the National Institutes of Health, the virus can live on cardboard, but a new study suggests that it disintegrates quickly on cardboard, unlike plastic or steel. So, deliveries in cardboard boxes are unlikely to spread the disease.

Extreme precautions

  • Open your package outside so as to limit the number of indoor surfaces they touch
  • Use gloves if possible, take whatever it is out of the box, wipe it down and get rid of the box and gloves
  • Wipe down all surfaces the items and boxes touched with something that contains at least 70% isopropyl alcohol
  • When finished, wash your hands for at least 20 seconds.

If you are ordering food

Ask the person to deliver the food outside.

Experts say once you bring it in, plate the food and microwave for thirty seconds. That’s long enough to kill viruses and bacteria, although it is unlikely that you’re going to get exposed to the virus this way.