COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Pandemic: Amtrak-related Discussion

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Green Maned Lion

Conductor
Joined
Dec 27, 2007
Messages
8,116
My local grocery store won’t let me and my wife shop together anymore. I mean I get it; their building is rated for 32 people; under our governors rule that means they can handle 16- they have eight employees. They just can’t afford having the two of us when they are only able to accommodate 8 customers.

i don’t consider this an improvement, but we didn’t have the kind of dummkopfs you were talking about before this.
 

NS VIA Fan

Conductor
Joined
Sep 24, 2011
Messages
1,457
My local grocery store won’t let me and my wife shop together anymore. I mean I get it; their building is rated for 32 people...…...
Even our large grocery stores are discouraging two family members shopping together but they're certainly not checking ID's at the door...... and I saw a sign at one of the small family run stores suggesting you pick up a surprise for dinner tonight or treat for the Significant Other you had to leave at home!
 

jiml

OBS Chief
Joined
Feb 27, 2019
Messages
895
Even our large grocery stores are discouraging two family members shopping together but they're certainly not checking ID's at the door.
It's the same here at most, although Costco and some others still allow two. Since people are only admitted one-at-a-time it's fairly easy to regulate. Our stores are never crowded - it's simply a case of big city rules to control crowds there applied to every location in a chain.
 

20th Century Rider

Service Attendant
Joined
Jan 26, 2020
Messages
108
This Oregon Coast community of mostly conservative and careful seniors seems to work very hard at staying safe… we all wear the masks, are courteous with each other, and keep a distance. However some of the newbie retiree workers who are supposed to be wiping down the carts just stand around doing absolutely nothing except collecting their minimum wage salaries… hmmm; and then there are the tough guys who push ahead in the checkout lines, aren’t wearing the masks, and who smile and intentionally get in your face with a very rude ‘hi there… ! And spray you with their covid mist… showing their virility… yup… we got ‘um here and they’re all over the country. So, it’s not perfect but we continue to try.😨
Screen Shot 2020-05-20 at 7.17.29 AM.png
 

Barb Stout

Lead Service Attendant
Joined
Mar 13, 2019
Messages
347
I've been using old T shirts cut into big squares then doubled to form a bandana shape. The nice thing is that they cover down to the collar area, are tucked in, and used once, then tossed in the washer.
I tried the t-shirt and also shirt method, but it kept sliding off at the "ties". How do you get yours to "stick"?
 

20th Century Rider

Service Attendant
Joined
Jan 26, 2020
Messages
108
Sleepers are better than coach travel for this issue, but you are assuming your room was thoroughly sterilized since the last occupancy. I'm not sure that's the case during hectic turnarounds. Almost impossible when a room is vacated mid-route.
A lot depends on the attendant... they range from amazing to offensively poor. I had an attendant on the Coast Starlight who sat in his room playing video games... refusing to bring dinner to my room. And the car was almost completely empty. Then I've had attendants who put out their own candy and magazines at the coffee area and came by frequently to see if they could get me anything. Of course, the last one was generously tipped... the lazy one? A complaint made to customer service. I don't wish bad on anyone but for price paid one should expect reasonable service. And NOW cleaning and sanitizing will be a big issue.
 

Ziv

OBS Chief
Joined
Oct 25, 2011
Messages
589
Good to know. I am going to be staying at an AirBNB that has been vacant for almost a month and spending my days outside rounding up cattle and then branding calves, so I figure I will be pretty safe. Glad to have a heads up about the National Guard.

It may change by the 28th -- but right now, the Montana National Guard will meet your flight, take your temperature, and ask you where you are planning to serve your 14-day quarantine (though they won't actually check up on you to see if you do; there was generally no enforcement action in Montana of the stay-at-home order or the travel restrictions. Police don't ask where you are going at routine traffic stops.)
 

Ziv

OBS Chief
Joined
Oct 25, 2011
Messages
589
I started using the Lysol and Ziploc technique in late March and it works pretty well, though it isn't like I can get a viral load count both before and after. ;-)
I let the mask outgas for a minute after I take it out of the bag and that seems to eliminate the "rush" I got when I tried putting the mask on right away after giving it a Lysol "soak". Now I have more than one mask, so I am usually able to able to use a fresh mask in a clean Ziploc instead of cleaning the one and only mask over the course of the day. I figure taking 3 masks will mean I won't need the Lysol at all on my trip.
I had one of the little travel Lysols but it got used up fairly quickly. I haven't seen any Lysol Disinfectant Spray available in a while. :-(

I made that statement based on personal experience with eye irritation and shortness of breath after entering places that had been sprayed with Lysol, not by looking at the ingredients. I guess you'll know pretty much know right away if your proposed method will cause problems for you or not. I am fairly sensitive to cleaners; for awhile I also had trouble with bleach having been sensitized to it over the years of using it in the clinical (and research) labs. And laundry!
 

20th Century Rider

Service Attendant
Joined
Jan 26, 2020
Messages
108
For whatever it's worth, I keep with me an aerosol sprayer [I got from the dollar store] containing a solution of 20% chlorine bleach and 80% water; and lots of paper toweling. This serves as a cautionary disinfectant any time I may have been physically exposed... in a store or whatever. OF COURSE, this is in addition to wearing a mask when in the vicinity of others. When I remove the mask I spray that as well with the disinfectant. I also spray my hands and paper toweling and do a thorough wipe frequently when out and about. These EXTRA ounces are worth pounds of cure... for sure!
 

Palmland

OBS Chief
Joined
May 25, 2006
Messages
788
Saw this speculation on Axios on what dining out may look like. Sounds like Amtrak is ahead of the times with dumbed down dining. 😀
**************
“Here's what's changing, according to restaurateurs and industry consultants:

Tables and booths will be separated by everything from plexiglass shields to clear shower curtains.
  • Tables and booths will be separated by everything from plexiglass shields to clear shower curtains.
  • Diners may have to wait in their cars or on the sidewalk for a text saying their table is ready.
  • People may have to order their whole meal — from appetizers through dessert — all at once, to minimize encounters with the staff.
  • Paper tablecloths will replace fabric ones, condiments won't be left on the table, and disposable plates and glasses may reign supreme.
  • Less frequent busing of tables, to avoid contact. Patrons will likely be asked to wear masks on their way to their table or when visiting the restroom (though not while actually eating).
  • To meet demand for "distanced" tables, some restaurants are seeking to expand into sidewalk cafes.” (or your roomette)!
 

Barb Stout

Lead Service Attendant
Joined
Mar 13, 2019
Messages
347
“Here's what's changing, according to restaurateurs and industry consultants:

Tables and booths will be separated by everything from plexiglass shields to clear shower curtains.
  • Tables and booths will be separated by everything from plexiglass shields to clear shower curtains.
Gosh, maybe the shields separating the tables might also cut down on the noise. If that's the case, I might be persuaded to go out to eat more. I stopped years ago when the entertainment industry decided that louder is better and more fun. But then again, I would likely gain a lot of weight given the kinds of meals most restaurants have on their menu.
 

AmtrakBlue

Conductor
Gathering Team Member
Joined
May 6, 2011
Messages
11,605
Saw this speculation on Axios on what dining out may look like. Sounds like Amtrak is ahead of the times with dumbed down dining. 😀
**************
“Here's what's changing, according to restaurateurs and industry consultants:

Tables and booths will be separated by everything from plexiglass shields to clear shower curtains.
  • Tables and booths will be separated by everything from plexiglass shields to clear shower curtains.
  • Diners may have to wait in their cars or on the sidewalk for a text saying their table is ready.
  • People may have to order their whole meal — from appetizers through dessert — all at once, to minimize encounters with the staff.
  • Paper tablecloths will replace fabric ones, condiments won't be left on the table, and disposable plates and glasses may reign supreme.
  • Less frequent busing of tables, to avoid contact. Patrons will likely be asked to wear masks on their way to their table or when visiting the restroom (though not while actually eating).
  • To meet demand for "distanced" tables, some restaurants are seeking to expand into sidewalk cafes.” (or your roomette)!
See, Amtrak was just being forward thinking when they made all those changes to the diner. ;)
 

anumberone

Conductor
AU Supporter
Joined
Aug 8, 2015
Messages
1,270
I'm wondering, I saw a TV clip of V P. Pence in a crowded restaurant, no masks worn by anyone and he serving himself a drink from a public soda dispenser. I myself don't approve, anyone have a understanding of this behavior.
 
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tricia

Conductor
Joined
Aug 23, 2011
Messages
1,004
I'm wondering, I saw a TV clip of V P. Pence in a crowed restaurant, no masks worn by anyone and he serving himself a drink from a public soda dispenser. I myself don't approve, anyone have a understanding of this behavior.
Delusional? Or willing to do anything, no matter how risky or stupid or discourteous, to please his boss?

Unless this is an old photo, taken pre-C19?
 

IndyLions

Lead Service Attendant
Joined
Nov 6, 2016
Messages
317
Delusional? Or willing to do anything, no matter how risky or stupid or discourteous, to please his boss?

Unless this is an old photo, taken pre-C19?
Not a fan of the VP or his boss, but from what I’ve seen of him lately, he’s been wearing a mask in public regularly. The blowback from the maskless photo (at Mayo?) had an effect on HIM at least...
 

Palmland

OBS Chief
Joined
May 25, 2006
Messages
788
My wife saw a pulmonologist yesterday for a follow up of respiratory infection this past winter. She said a mask mainly protects the other guy from your germs/virus, especially the larger moisture droplets. Very important if you've been sick or are asymptomatic for the virus. Does little to protect you from breathing in someone else's microns of any infection (without a N-95 mask). Of course the problem with that is, how do you know you are asymptomatic and no way is everyone going to be tested every day to find out. That's why this virus is so dangerous.

CBS news had a report this morning that said science now thinks it is very unlikely you will pick up the virus from contact with a hard surface. Another report said most severe cases appear to be related to those in a crowded place where the virus may be concentrated. Especially so if there is a lot of cheering or singing. So much for MLB.. Bottom line though, for those of us in a high risk category, better to be safe than sorry. The science and recommendations seem to change daily. It would seem to me that younger people would be much safer outdoors with social distancing (no crowds) where the UV rays negate much of the impact of the virus. I suspect beaches and parks will be popular this summer as everyone has cabin fever. Although it will be hard to control friends getting together and having a good time. Pray for a vaccine.
 

capltd29

Lead Service Attendant
Joined
Jun 27, 2004
Messages
332
I'm a little late to this discussion, but thought I would chime in on the ventilation discussion. As mentioned above, Covid is primarily transmitted by droplets, from a cough or sneeze or very vigorous phonation like screaming or singing. It can become airborne or aerosolized by certain procedures such as use of a CPAP or BiPAP or a nebulizer machine. I could see a scenario where an infected passenger innocently uses their CPAP on the train and creates an airborne situation and could potentially contaminate nearby people. I still think its unlikely it would be able to travel through all of the duct work to a far away room. I don't know if Amtrak has temporarily banned the use of these devices, but they probably should...although the chances of an asymptomatic person carrying COVID 19 happens to be using a CPAP on the train near where you are sleeping seem exceedingly low.

In my ER we are not able to use BIPAP unless in a negative pressure room with people wearing full N95s or PAPRs. We also are using MDIs instead of Nebulizers for this reason.


I have an upcoming trip on 7 and 8 beginning in Early July. We have 2 deluxe rooms. I plan to pack 2 N95s for each of us which have been sanitized by sitting in isolation for 2 months, really for only heavy crowd situations, which hopefully will be rare. Outside of really close contact, N95s aren't needed and as a HCP it really pains me to see people out wearing them to the grocery store or on a walk with the dog. Also, bringing several cloth and surgical masks to wear the rest of the time. Hand hygiene and surface cleaning are the most important factors in my opinion. Of course, if the situation gets worse or someone get sick, we will cancel, but I'm still hopeful.
 

gwolfdog

Train Attendant
Joined
Mar 27, 2020
Messages
51
My wife saw a pulmonologist yesterday for a follow up of respiratory infection this past winter. She said a mask mainly protects the other guy from your germs/virus, especially the larger moisture droplets. Very important if you've been sick or are asymptomatic for the virus. Does little to protect you from breathing in someone else's microns of any infection (without a N-95 mask). Of course the problem with that is, how do you know you are asymptomatic and no way is everyone going to be tested every day to find out. That's why this virus is so dangerous.

CBS news had a report this morning that said science now thinks it is very unlikely you will pick up the virus from contact with a hard surface. Another report said most severe cases appear to be related to those in a crowded place where the virus may be concentrated. Especially so if there is a lot of cheering or singing. So much for MLB.. Bottom line though, for those of us in a high risk category, better to be safe than sorry. The science and recommendations seem to change daily. It would seem to me that younger people would be much safer outdoors with social distancing (no crowds) where the UV rays negate much of the impact of the virus. I suspect beaches and parks will be popular this summer as everyone has cabin fever. Although it will be hard to control friends getting together and having a good time. Pray for a vaccine.
I hope he was wearing a Mask. When my wife saw her Oncologist on Wednesday he wasn't. The arrogance.
 

Palmland

OBS Chief
Joined
May 25, 2006
Messages
788
Yes, she had a mask, a scarf over her hair, a coat, and only her eyes showing, We waited while they cleaned and disinfected the exam room we were going to. She disinfected her stethoscope while talking after the exam and same for her laptop keyboard where she made notes. One disturbing comment: she says a lot of false positive and negatives for patients who are tested - about 30%. One patient who was on a ventilator was tested 3 times before he tested positive. My wife had a test several months ago and then an antibody test this week. Both negative and she feels fine.

Your oncologist may get a daily test so feels he cannot transmit the virus, but that is still surprising.
 

capltd29

Lead Service Attendant
Joined
Jun 27, 2004
Messages
332
Yes, she had a mask, a scarf over her hair, a coat, and only her eyes showing, We waited while they cleaned and disinfected the exam room we were going to. She disinfected her stethoscope while talking after the exam and same for her laptop keyboard where she made notes. One disturbing comment: she says a lot of false positive and negatives for patients who are tested - about 30%. One patient who was on a ventilator was tested 3 times before he tested positive. My wife had a test several months ago and then an antibody test this week. Both negative and she feels fine.

Your oncologist may get a daily test so feels he cannot transmit the virus, but that is still surprising.
Way more false negatives than positives, since its a PCR test. The newer generations are better than the original test where the 70% sensitivity came from. Its also very operator dependent on going far enough back and holding it long enough. People should wear a mask whether they've tested negative or not. Period. Including the president.
 
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