China coronavirus: Death toll rises as more cities shut down

China coronavirus: Death toll rises as more cities shut down

China coronavirus: Death toll rises as more cities shut down

Written by Staff Writer

24 Jan, 2020 | 12:19 pm

China has widened a lockdown in Hubei province – the center of the coronavirus outbreak – as the death toll climbed to 26. At least 10 cities in the central Chinese province, which has a population of 60 million, have travel restrictions in force.

On Thursday, a coronavirus patient died in nearby Hebei province – making it the first death outside Hubei. Another death was later confirmed in the remote province of Heilongjiang. The north-eastern area borders Russia and is more than 2,000 kilometers (1,200 miles) from Wuhan. Nationally, there are currently 830 confirmed cases of patients infected with the virus. The lockdown comes on the eve of Lunar New Year, one of the most important dates in the Chinese calendar.

Millions of people typically travel home for the festival – but many in Hubei province will not be celebrating.  Restrictions vary from city to city – through many cities have suspended transport services. In Wuhan, the capital of Hubei – and the place where the virus emerged – all bus, subway and ferry services have been suspended and all outbound planes and trains canceled. Residents have been advised not to leave, and roadblocks have been reported.

Ezhou, a smaller city in Hubei, shut its railway station. The city of Enshi has suspended all bus services. Vietnam and Singapore were on Thursday added to the nation’s recording confirmed cases, joining Thailand, the US, Taiwan, and South Korea. Japan confirmed its second case on Thursday and South Korea its second case on Friday.


Script Courtesy to BBC News 

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