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British Army creates COVID-killing spray that civilians now can buy, but only in U.K.

The spray kills 99.99 percent of the virus in 60 seconds, the British government says.

A military spray substance
A military spray substance
(Airman Daniel Snider / U.S. Air Force)
Updated: December 18, 2020 - 11:34pm

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

American and other international consumers have clamored to buy a COVID-killing spray created by the British Army, but right now it is only available in the United Kingdom, developers said.

"People want this disinfectant because it works," an employee of Virusend, the British company that markets the spray, told Just the News. "Unfortunately, we only ship to the UK at the moment."

The British Army created the disinfectant this year, and fine tuned the formula that it says kills 99.99% of the Covid-19 virus in 60 seconds. The spray, which also is called Virusend, is effective against the strain that caused the pandemic.

The Army has used the spray at COVID-19 testing sites in Preston, in western central England, and Medway, in the southeast region. 

"The troops who are now working in Medway have welcomed the deployment of this additional force protection measure," said Lt. Col. James Cackett, who commands the British Army's Medway Resilience Unit that assists at the testing site. The spray "is proving easy to use and will help us keep our work areas safe for everyone," he said in a statement.  

Around 50,000 bottles of Virusend has been dispatched to military units working at COVID-19 testing stations. During the summer, the spray was made available to civilians, to use on various surfaces such as shopping carts or doorknobs.

The British government officially announced on Wednesday that Virusend is available for sale in spray bottles, prompting a rash of civilian purchases - and inquiries from overseas. Requests especially come from the United States, where the virus has prompted fresh lockdowns and other measures.

"It's awful having to tell Americans we don't ship outside our borders," the Virusend employee said. 

The U.S.-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said over the summer that much remains unknown about how the virus is passed from one person to another.

"Transmission of coronavirus occurs much more commonly through respiratory droplets than through objects and surfaces, like doorknobs, countertops, keyboards, toys, etc.," the CDC noted in a July report. But, it added: "Current evidence suggests that SARS-CoV-2 may remain viable for hours to days on surfaces made from a variety of materials."

The CDC recommended that people clean visibly dirty surfaces and then disinfect them in order to curb the spread of COVID-19 and other viral respiratory illnesses. 

Throughout Great Britain, the armed forces have helped battle the virus by assisting at testing sites, or delivering vaccines. Some 65,618 deaths in Great Britain have been attributed to COVID.

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