Coronavirus: Wuhan to end lockdown on April 8, world fears resurgence
- Wuhan - the epicenter of the coronavirus outnreak - will end its uncompromising lockdown on April 8, allowing traffic to reenter and pass through the city.
- Eleven million people confined to their homes since January 23 aren't allowed to leave their homes, and are being delivered food as armed police patrol the streets.
- Wuhan's lockdown has been more severe than anywhere else, meaning the world is watching closely to see how effective it's been in slowing the spread of the coronavirus.
- In recent weeks, Italy, Spain, Britain, and several US states have enforced lockdowns and curfews of their own as Europe and the Americas enter their worst periods fighting the virus yet.
- Some experts fear that when lockdowns end, a "boomerang effect" will occur, bringing a resurgence of viruses due to unidentified and symptomless infections, as well as new imported cases.
- Meanwhile, some experts and local Wuhan residents doubt that the city is as clear of the virus as the government says.
- For more stories go to www.BusinessInsider.co.za.
The city of Wuhan, China, will end its all-encompassing lockdown on April 8, with the world anxiously watching to see what comes next.
In a Tuesday post on social media site Weibo, Hubei province - where Wuhan is located - said restrictions in, out, and within the city will end, meaning people will be able to pass through Wuhan and the wider province.
It will mark the end of a 76-day, intense lockdown, which started on January 23 as the coronavirus raged out of control through the city and the province.
Wuhan, where the coronavirus broke out last December, has been hard hit by the virus. The scale of its lockdown has been unprecedented both in terms of measures and timescale, and far surpasses the rules currently being set in countries like Italy, France, Britain, and parts of the US.
Here's a rundown of what's been happening in Wuhan:
- Eleven million residents all confined to their homes, with the exception of delivery and hospital workers.
- One person from each household only allowed to leave the building every 72 hours to buy food and medical supplies.
- Food and medicine delivered to their doors to avoid transmission of the virus.
- Entrances to housing estates guarded so only residents enter and leave.
- Armed police patrolling the streets to make sure people don't breach the restrictions without proper cause.
- Police enforcing traffic blocks by controlling who enters the city and who doesn't.
But as the official death and infection toll in Wuhan, Hubei province, and the rest of China continues to decrease, so too have the number of restrictions in Wuhan.
On Monday, ahead of the April 8 reopening, a number of public-transport services and supermarkets reopened to the public, according to state news outlet CGTN, and over the weekend a train carrying 1,000 workers pulled into the city's main station.
Some experts now fear that the lifting of restrictions will bring back the virus in a phenomenon known as the "boomerang effect."
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