Returning Workers Demand IAQ Assurances
According to a recent Opinium survey for Rentokil Initial, the percentage of Brits concerned about airborne transmission of SARS-CoV-2 has risen by 19 per cent since November 2020 to just over a quarter of the survey sample.
The poll of 2,000 adults also found a majority (52 per cent) of Brits remain worried life will never go back to normal – the same percentage recorded previously, with contact with other people cited by half the sample as the most concerning route for transmission of the coronavirus.
Last year, the World Health Organization (WHO) published updated guidance cautioning of the need to protect against ‘Air to Person’ transmission of the coronavirus in a move that is widely believed to have impacted public attitudes.
Two-thirds (68 per cent) of the survey sample indicated they believe businesses and employers should do more to ensure they provide clean air in the premises (up from 65 per cent in November 2020), whilst 62 per cent of respondents went so far to say that air purification systems should be mandatory in public buildings and education facilities (up from 59 per cent). Nearly one third (30 per cent) of workers said they won’t go back to work unless their employer assures them of the building’s indoor air quality.
With 12th April – the proposed date for the relaxation of lockdown measures for the retail and hospitality sectors in England fast approaching, 31 per cent of the survey sample expressed concerns about socialising indoors.
Participants were similarly concerned about using public transport post-lockdown (36 per cent), and drinking indoors at bars and pubs (29 per cent).
Jamie Woodhall, UK Technical & Innovation Manager for Rentokil Initial, comments:
“These survey results show that tackling air quality and preventing the airborne spread of Coronavirus clearly remains an important challenge, alongside the vaccine rollout.
“The scientific evidence continues to build and it is very clear how important good ventilation and air purification is within indoor spaces. When it comes to easing of lockdown measures, the expectation from the public is that businesses and employers need to do their bit in helping to ensure that they are providing clean air, so that the risk of catching an airborne virus indoors is reduced.”
 Research conducted by Opinium LLP for Rentokil Initial. Conducted 12-15 March 2021 sampling 2,000 adults in the UK