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Adam Savage coughing on Mythbusters contamination episode

MythBusters Experiment Shows How Fast Germs Spread

If there’s one thing MythBusters Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman taught us, it’s that wearing a beret and rocking a walrus moustache is about the most remarkable thing any man can do. Aside from that, however, the destructive duo also taught us a bunch of cool science facts, some of which are back in the news again. Some pretty clever users online have dug up an old MythBusters episode that tackles the truth behind hygiene and the flu, and one experiment is going (for lack of a better word) viral.

The MythBusters contamination experiment was published back in 2015, but here in 2020, it’s proving just how quickly germs can spread, which in today’s climate is a scary premise. In the experiment, Savage plays a person with a runny nose tasked with hosting a 30-minute dinner party. A drip is attached to his face to simulate the runny nose, with a liquid invisible to the naked eye but detectable under UV light leaked continuously.

Savage is indeed in no way abiding by the social distancing measures we’ve all been recommended, but he doesn’t do anything that would be considered out of the ordinary by dinner-party standards. The results of the MythBusters contamination experiment show just how vital our social distancing measures are. Over just 30 minutes, he can contaminate all but one of his guests, that being Kari Byron. How did Kari stay safe? By following real-world experience and methods for avoiding people’s germs.

The return of the MythBusters contamination experiment is bringing home just how important the social distancing process can be to the mitigation of further COVID-19 contraction. It isn’t enough to just cover your mouth when you cough; germs spread quickly, even when we think we’re doing a bang-up job at preventing them. If there is one thing to be learned from the MythBusters contamination experiment, it’s that being a germaphobe will give you a better chance of survival against illness.

That, and you should probably pick up a new beret. Online, of course.

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