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kentuck

(111,508 posts)
Thu May 14, 2020, 11:24 AM May 2020

Why are so many people at meat-processing plants catching the virus?

Is it because they are working in such close quarters?

Or is it spread from meat that has been butchered? Reportedly, it all began at a "wet market" in China?

Or is it the poor ventilation in those workplaces?

Or do the workers have weak immune systems?

How many people have these folks come into contact with, including their families?

Also, we read that old folks in nursing homes are a big target for the virus, as well as jails and prisons.

The thing they all have in common is that they are breathing the same air in enclosed environments.

This should be a top priority, I would think.

13 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
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Why are so many people at meat-processing plants catching the virus? (Original Post) kentuck May 2020 OP
Close quarters most likely Freddie May 2020 #1
It's because they have to work very close together on a kind of assembly line The Velveteen Ocelot May 2020 #2
They wear masks on the line however the line has to go on break, lunch, and changing LiberalArkie May 2020 #8
Not Everywhere ProfessorGAC May 2020 #13
Close quarters and talking loudly DrToast May 2020 #3
These meat packing plants are also usually chilled which helps the virus linger. LonePirate May 2020 #4
for one thing, it's a population that our president has spent his entire administration dehumanizing fishwax May 2020 #5
Logistics Onelove Vt May 2020 #6
close quarters AND really no PPE gear beachbumbob May 2020 #7
My guess ... CountAllVotes May 2020 #9
Pictures MoonlitKnight May 2020 #10
Not only working in close quarters Wellstone ruled May 2020 #11
Sounds like the viral loads are much higher duforsure May 2020 #12

Freddie

(9,365 posts)
1. Close quarters most likely
Thu May 14, 2020, 11:28 AM
May 2020

Which is why it spreads so fast in a nursing home or prison. Closing schools and college dorms was absolutely the right thing to do, or this would be even worse.

The Velveteen Ocelot

(117,324 posts)
2. It's because they have to work very close together on a kind of assembly line
Thu May 14, 2020, 11:29 AM
May 2020

(or disassembly line, since they are cutting up meat). There is no danger of infection from the meat itself.

LiberalArkie

(15,860 posts)
8. They wear masks on the line however the line has to go on break, lunch, and changing
Thu May 14, 2020, 11:57 AM
May 2020

rooms to change clothes together. Hard to eat with 500 of your coworkers with a mask and gloves on

ProfessorGAC

(66,677 posts)
13. Not Everywhere
Thu May 14, 2020, 12:40 PM
May 2020

There were pictures of the Hormel plant in IL, the place in SD, and a site in your state of workers on the line.
Nobody was wearing masks in any of those 8 or 10 pix.
They are now, but I'm not so sure that was standard practice prior.

fishwax

(29,187 posts)
5. for one thing, it's a population that our president has spent his entire administration dehumanizing
Thu May 14, 2020, 11:40 AM
May 2020

Frankly, our country as a whole doesn't value their lives as much as "regular folks" (as the Chief Justice of the Wisconsin Supreme Court would say) because they're disproportionately latino, immigrant, and poor. That's a big part of the why.

Beyond that, the working conditions are close quarters, indoors, lots of shared surfaces to contact, a lot of yelling/loud talking (because it's loud in there) and breathing hard (because it's hard work).

Onelove Vt

(7 posts)
6. Logistics
Thu May 14, 2020, 11:40 AM
May 2020

Close quarters on the floor. Speaking loudly because of machinery noise. The processing floor is kept cold for obvious reasons and that keeps the virus viable for a long time. Also, the work is stationary so you are spending a lot of time in one spot so viral load can build

CountAllVotes

(20,905 posts)
9. My guess ...
Thu May 14, 2020, 12:00 PM
May 2020

Like the wet markets, lots of blood all over everything. If it becomes stagnant or is from a sick animal, it mutates and any one with the corona virus already contracts the new mutation and it spreads.

If that is not the right way of looking at it, I fear that the meat supply in this country is not safe, which could depend greatly upon where the meat is from and how it is being processed.

Safety and hygiene are often not present at these processing plants. When they inspected them recently, workers were wearing make-shift masks. It some cases, an eye mask over the mouth. These types of masks do little if anything to protect against such a filthy job if any at all.

So perhaps it is a combination of the above things dare one suggest?

 

Wellstone ruled

(34,661 posts)
11. Not only working in close quarters
Thu May 14, 2020, 12:10 PM
May 2020

in temps maintained below 58 degrees as well as almost 100% humidity because of the constant use of water washing tables and floors. The further along in the disassembly process,the area temps are cooler. Used to be 48 degrees on the Packing lines just ahead of the Coolers.

Now in saying that,knowing the off plant site culture of Hispanic as well as Somali Workers,there day ends with sharing their experiences with family . And Birthdays,Weddings,and Family are number one. Think about how this Virus travels and if a infected person goes to his or hers child's Birthday Party after work with a family group of 20-50 members attending,and there might be more than one of these celebrations happening with this given group.

duforsure

(11,885 posts)
12. Sounds like the viral loads are much higher
Thu May 14, 2020, 12:30 PM
May 2020

Where close working conditions are used, and with masks these cases would have been much lower, and less potent. Something trump and the GOP refuse to promote. They even do things preventing people from being able to get masks. While trump proclaims he's prevailed, lol. If people are stupid enough to believe him , they deserve zero sympathy from me when they get it , and suffer from it. Remember , he claimed this was a hoax, well I can think of over 84,000 reasons he lied about it saying that. He knew it wasn't a hoax all along.

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