This is how long Wuhan was under lockdown as restrictions in the city are lifted

Wednesday, 8th April 2020, 3:38 pm
Updated Wednesday, 8th April 2020, 3:39 pm
The lockdown lasted for nearly three months and saw all journeys in and out of the city banned (Photo: Getty Images)

Wuhan in China, where coronavirus is said to have originated, imposed what is probably the most extreme lockdown so far.

The lockdown lasted for nearly three months and saw all journeys in and out of the city banned, and schools, universities, and most shops forced to close.

When did the lockdown start?

The lockdown was imposed on 23 January in a bid to curb the rate of infections.

Chinese authorities imposed unprecedented restrictions on travel and ordered most businesses to close as part of the effort, after being overwhelmed with thousands of new cases each day.

The city has a population of 11 million people, but the lockdown meant no travel in or out of the city was allowed, even for those medical or humanitarian reasons, and public transport was completely suspended inside the city.

Private cars were also banned from the roads in most circumstances.

Most citizens live in residential blocks or compounds and were faced with barred visits, with only inhabitants, authorities, or carers helping the elderly or disabled permitted access.

Schools and universities were already closed for the lunar new year, but this holiday was extended, and most shops were also shut, with only pharmacies and supermarkets kept open.

Residents were only permitted to leave their homes to pick up essential supplies or seek medical help - and those who did leave were required to wear a mask.

Conditions were later tightened with authorities ordering house searches for potentially infected individuals, who were then forced into quarantine.

When were restrictions lifted?

Restrictions started to be eased last month after Wuhan reported its first full week with no new infections on 18 March.

Shopping malls were reopened and some people in “epidemic-free” residential compounds were allowed to leave their homes for two hours.

The lockdown in Wuhan was officially lifted on Wednesday (8 Apr), almost three months after it came into force.

Road and rail connections have now been reopened, and approved residents will now be able to use public transport if they can provide a QR code for scanning.

This code is unique for each person and links to their confirmed health status.

A limited air service of 200 flights are scheduled to depart Wuhan on Wednesday (8 Apr), carrying 10,000 passengers.

However, some limits on transport still remain in place.

Some people are now being allowed back to work, although nationwide there are still strict controls for fear the virus may return.

People who are involved in making medical supplies and other daily goods are now permitted to return to work, while other industries that impact national or global supply chains can also reopen.

Schools are still closed until further notice, and strict lockdowns are still in force across other areas of China.

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