UC Berkeley student with measles may have spread disease on public transportation

BERKELEY (KRON) — A UC Berkeley student with measles might have spread the disease on public transportation, the city of Berkeley announced Monday.

The dates of exposure to the community were from August 24 through August 29, when the student was put in isolation, the city said. Test results Monday confirmed the student had measles.

The city said the student left the campus on AC Transit bus 25-A at 3:30 p.m. last Monday and returned on the same bus line at 5:30 p.m.. The measles can linger in the air for up to two hours, so Berkeley community members may have been exposed in a wide variety of places, the city said.

“Measles is a highly infectious, airborne virus, which spreads rapidly,” the city said. “Symptoms can develop between 7 and 21 days after exposure to the virus. The risk is very slight for those who have received the recommended two doses of the MMR vaccine.”

Measles symptoms include fever and facial rash. The city is urging anyone with symptoms to contact a doctor immediately.

“I encourage Berkeley community members to make sure they and their children have received the required two doses,” said Dr. Janet Berreman, who is Berkeley’s Health Officer. “Obtaining records of your vaccination could prove critical in the event of a local outbreak.”

The infected student is now in isolation, according to the city.

For the full press release, click here.

AC Transit spokesman Clarence Johnson has responded to the possible spread of the measles:

As we were just informed of this late this afternoon, we are in the process of determining the most effective response. But the incident happened more than a week ago which means 1. The virus is no longer airborne on our buses and, at any rate, 2. The bus in question now has been thoroughly cleaned several times. Given the the timeline, the Berkeley health officials have no specific recommended action for AC Transit to take at this time

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