Coronavirus: Clean Cave Day to be observed under strict health protocols

September 19, 2020 - 19:36

TEHRAN – The Iranian Cave and Speleology Association has requested nature lovers and ordinary people not to enter caves on the Clean Cave Day, September 23, saying, this year the occasion will be observed under strict health protocols by experienced cavers.

“The ban is necessary to keep the caves and cave creatures isolated from the coronavirus. It is better to avoid entering the caves as much as possible because such closed spaces are highly prone to become infected,” the association announced in a press release on Saturday.

“Caves should not be neglected as the last untouched human habitat and a relatively pristine edge and sensitive ecosystem of nature,” parts of the press release reads.

The 2nd day of Mehr (which this year falls on September 23) is called “Clean Cave Day” by the Iranian Cave and Speleology Association. It’s an occasion when cavers and nature lovers throughout the country take bags, go to the caves in their provinces for cleansing.

Iran is geologically a part of the Alpine-Himalayan organic belt. The country features a variety of mountain ranges and hundreds of caves with Ali-Sadr, Karaftu, Kataleh Khor, Quri Qaleh amongst the most notables.

According to Britannica Encyclopedia, the enigmatic evidence of human presence on the Iranian plateau is as early as Lower Paleolithic times. The first well-documented evidence of human habitation is in deposits from several excavated cave and rock-shelter sites, located mainly in the Zagros Mountains of western Iran and dated to Middle Paleolithic or Mousterian times (c. 100,000 BC).