When residents think of Illinois State Police troopers, they generally think of officers wearing iconic brown hats and black ties as they go about their official duties, but now that’s about to change thanks to the coronavirus pandemic.
On Thursday, the department revealed that troopers will not be wearing the hats or ties as they look to limit the spread of COVID-19 in the state:
“No hats, no ties, but we are still troopers,” the state police said in a tweet. “And we are still here.”
According to the department, "items that cannot easily be washed and disinfected are mediums that can accumulate and spread COVID-19," which led to the decision to temporarily stop officers from wearing the items.
Experts haven’t settled on exactly how long the novel coronavirus can survive on clothing, but most experts say that the virus could conceivably survive for up to a day on fabric. Dr. Amesh Adalja, senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, told Health.com that fabric likely isn’t a “major vehicle spread” for the virus, but cautioned that it’s likely the virus could remain viable for at least several hours on pieces of clothing.