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Walking in hallways could put you at greater risk of COVID-19

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Narrow hallways are a breeding ground for the spread of the coronavirus especially if you are walking behind a person who is infected. 

According to a new paper by American Institute of Physics, streams of virus-laden droplets float backwards if an unmasked, infected person coughs. That leaves the person behind them at risk because they are essentially walking into a COVID-19 cloud. 

Researchers point to the structure of hallways. The walls are close to one another and don’t allow for the droplets to disperse as they would in larger spaces. And six feet of social distancing isn’t enough in these situations. 

Authors say this is a problem because it poses a threat and challenge to determining how to safely socially distance in narrow corridors. 

News 8 spoke with Dr. Cole Beeler, infectious disease physician at IU Health, to get his thoughts on the problem.

To watch the entire interview, click on the video above.

Indiana State Department of Health reported Thursday that 64 more Hoosiers have died from COVID-19, for a total of 9,218. A total of 601,937 Hoosiers have tested positive for COVID-19.

News 8’s medical reporter, Dr. Mary Elizabeth Gillis, D.Ed., is a classically trained medical physiologist and biobehavioral research scientist. She has been a health, medical and science reporter for over 5 years. Her work has been featured in national media outlets. You can follow her on Facebook @DrMaryGillis.