Video: Wall Street Journal Looks into Stadiums and Coronavirus

Greg Arias

Sports fans are ready to return to the stadiums and gyms for sporting events. We want to cheer, boo, high five, and listen to the band play with our friends and fellow fans, but should we be willing to go back so soon?

A new video produced by the Wall Street Journal titled 'Why Stadiums are Incubators for Coronavirus Spread'  includes in-depth comments from Texas A&M athletic director Ross Bjork looks into the stadium setting in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The video shows in animation how the virus is spread and how it could spread quickly in a stadium setting. According to the video, the three key factors include proximity, contact, and shared environments, all three of which are very much parts of the stadium experience. 

 Dr. Peter Chin-Hong, an infectious disease specialist, walks the viewer through how the virus could spread through a stadium crowd., According to Chin-Hong, the places most dangerous in terms of spreading the virus are cruise ships, nursing homes, jails/prisons, and stadiums because of the proximity of persons in those settings. 

Explaining how the virus is spread in those environments is relatively easy. Respiratory droplets from an infected person are dispersed when that infected person speaks and can travel up to three feet, or further in a stadium setting where fans cheer loudly and project those droplets farther away.

The video mentions the potential of the phrase "new normal" where the protocols that could be put into place this season if fans are allowed into stadiums might remain into the future, creating a new normal for sports fans. 

While I despise that phrase and don't believe we are facing that situation for the remainder of our days, I do feel that those precautions are necessary for the present.

It's one man's opinion, but I believe things will return to their original normals at some point, but until that time arrives, we will and should continue to use these precautions when it comes to large gatherings such as stadiums. 

The video tells the story in great and easy to understand detail, and if you are a sports fan, it is a must-watch to show you what you might be facing if you decide to attend sporting events in the coming months. 

It's ultimately the decision of each individual as to how you feel and how much risk you are willing to undertake to attend a sporting event, and many of us will take the risk. Still, at least it's worth the time to know and understand those risks before making the final decision.

The eight-minute video is available here.  

 

Follow Greg on Twitter @GregAriasSports and @SIVanderbilt or Facebook at Vanderbilt Commodores-Maven.

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