Study reveals COVID-19 transmission rate on trains
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Train is a common mode of public transport across the globe; however, the risk of COVID-19 transmission among individual train passengers remains unclear.

Researchers quantified the transmission risk of COVID-19 on high-speed train passengers using data from 2,334 index patients and 72,093 close contacts who had co-travel times of 0–8 hours from 19 December 2019 through 6 March 2020 in China. They analysed the spatial and temporal distribution of COVID-19 transmission among train passengers to elucidate the associations between infection, spatial distance, and co-travel time.

Findings of the Study:
-- The attack rate in train passengers on seats within a distance of 3 rows and 5 columns of the index patient varied from 0 to 10.3%.
-- Passengers in seats on the same row as the index patient had an average attack rate of 1.5%, higher than that in other rows, with a relative risk of 11.2.
-- Travellers adjacent to the index patient had the highest attack rate of COVID-19 infections among all seats.
-- The attack rate decreased with increasing distance, but it increased with increasing co-travel time.
-- The attack rate increased on average by 0.15% per hour of co-travel; for passengers at adjacent seats, this increase was 1.3%, the highest among all seats considered.

Conclusively, COVID-19 has a high transmission risk among train passengers, but this risk shows significant differences with co-travel time and seat location. During disease outbreaks, when travelling on public transportation in confined spaces such as trains, measures should be taken to reduce the risk of transmission, including increasing seat distance, reducing passenger density, and use of personal hygiene protection.

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