BEIJING (AP) – Chinese cities were imposing fresh lockdowns and travel restrictions after the number of new daily COVID-19 cases tripled during a week-long holiday.
The latest lockdown started yesterday in Fenyang city in northern China’s Shanxi province after a preliminary positive case was found in citywide testing the previous day, state broadcaster CCTV reported.
In the nearby Inner Mongolia region, the capital Hohhot announced that outside vehicles and passengers would be prohibited from entering the city starting today. Hohhot recorded over 2,000 cases over about 12 days.
Travel was down during an annual National Day holiday that began on October 1, as authorities discouraged people from leaving their cities and provinces. But the number of new daily cases grew to some 1,800 from 600 at the start of the break.
Outbreaks have been reported across the country, with the largest in Inner Mongolia and the far-west Xinjiang region. Both have been recording several hundred new cases a day.
Both Shanghai, where residents endured lockdowns earlier this year, and the national capital Beijing have had a small but growing number of cases.
Two Shanghai districts announced closures of cinemas and other entertainment venues last Monday.
Lining up for a free virus test several times a week has become the norm for many Chinese, with Beijing and other cities requiring a negative test result within 72 hours to enter parks, office buildings, shops and other public places.