Reality TV star Coco Austin, the wife of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit star Ice-T, shared a strange photo on Instagram Tuesday, showing two people wearing clear plastic water jugs on their heads in an airport train to avoid contracting the coronavirus. The photo is genuine, and surfaced in late January. However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not suggest people walk around with plastic containers on their heads.
"S—'s getting serious," Austin wrote in the caption. She added the hashtag "coronavirus."
"Is that a real pic?" one of Austin's followers asked. "Yep," she succinctly replied.
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Austin is right. The photo was one of several Lynne Carter shared on Facebook on Jan. 28, reports Vancouver Is Awesome. Some of the pictures were taken at Vancouver International Airport, but the photo Austin shared was taken at a different airport. Carter shared several photos of other travelers wearing water jugs on their heads.
The CDC's list of precautions does not involve putting plastic containers on your head. Instead, the agency suggests people avoid close contact with those who are already sick; wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap; and avoid touching "high-touch" surfaces in public places, like elevator buttons, handles and handrails. The agency also suggests voiding handshakes and touching your face. You should also avoid unnecessary travel and avoid crowds. The CDC suggests cleaning and disinfecting your home, as well.
According to the CDC, the people who are most at-risk of COVID-19 are older adults and those with serious chronic medical conditions like lung disease, heart disease and diabetes. Some of the early symptoms include difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, persistent pain in the chest, new confusion and bluish lips or face.
There are more than 128,000 confirmed coronavirus cases in the world, including more than 1,600 in the U.S., according to Johns Hopkins University research. There have been 40 deaths, including 31 in Washington state.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told CBS News the testing system for the U.S. could be up and running "probably in a week." He previously told Congress the testing system was "failing."
"What I was referring to at the hearing was that the system of testing was originally designed for a doctor-patient type of interaction where you go into the doctor's office or a clinic with symptoms and the reason you want to test is either you have been exposed or have symptoms," Fauci explained. "That goes to a public health laboratory that the CDC made the test for. It works very well for that. But what it doesn't work for is if you want to do broad, blanket-type of screenings that answer the question that so many people are asking: How many people in this country are infected?"
Austin, whose real name is Nicole Natalie Marrow, married Ice-T in 2002. They starred in the three-season reality show Ice Loves Coco from 2011 to 2014.
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