As New York gets ready to reopen, experts are calling out the state over its requirement to require plexiglass dividers between diners at indoor restaurants.
From the New York Times:
Restaurants will be allowed to place tables closer together to reach 100 percent capacity if five-foot-tall solid partitions are placed between them, Mr. Cuomo said. And theaters and other large venues, including ballparks, are permitted to return to full capacity, instead of one-third full, if they require patrons to show proof of vaccination.
Paula Olsiewski, who lists “expertise in indoor microbiology & chemistry” in her bio, calls the move “very disappointing”:
— Paula Olsiewski (@polsiewski) May 19, 2021
And Linsey Marr, an often-quoted engineering professor at Virginia Tech, said that adding the dividers “may actually be harmful”:
Stop wasting money on plexiglass! It does not help in this type of setting and may actually be harmful because it impedes proper ventilation. See this outbreak of 20+ people in a sports bar that had distancing and plexiglass. https://t.co/lry4jWe0pE (great story, see whole🧵) https://t.co/icdAqulCVo
— Linsey Marr (@linseymarr) May 19, 2021
The inertia here is so great that the plexiglass stays up even though there’s so much evidence that it just doesn’t work:
"Where did you have lunch?"
Case: "In a sports bar. It was packed because of the big game. But I don't know anyone else at the other tables."
— KJ Seung (@kj_seung) May 13, 2021
Lather. Rinse. Repeat:
NY: opening restaurants at 100% as long as they have barriers between
Experts: “All of us in public health have been on the anti-Plexiglas crusade,” said Dr. El-Sadr. “Plexiglas is not protective.”
Cool cool cool https://t.co/2x3sQF0NWT
— molly ꗯ (@heymolly) May 19, 2021
Well, we’ll mention they’re useless if that helps:
Why oh why do we write about plexiglass partitions as if they work!?! If you're going to mention businesses using them, you should also mention that they are useless! https://t.co/M5YhzfAY8P
— Rosie Spinks (@rojospinks) May 19, 2021
And it’s not like this is anything new yet states keep these mandates in place:
⬆️risk with in-person schooling vs. not,
but interventions in school reduce this risk, the more the merrier.
NOTE: plexiglass is associated with higher risk! Likely it inhibits proper ventilation of the room, allowing aerosols to accumulate more.https://t.co/vAcPMqAqjs https://t.co/MsizEN6l2u pic.twitter.com/PgnOJGorRB
— Linsey Marr (@linseymarr) May 6, 2021
Narrator: “They did not spend the money on a portable HEPA air filtration unit instead”:
I agree with Matthew Callstrom's point about plexiglass: "we came to the conclusion they didn’t add value to masking and distancing." Spend the money on a portable HEPA air filtration unit instead. https://t.co/YY4XT7oSqg
— Linsey Marr (@linseymarr) March 20, 2021