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China faces virus challenges as international freight resembles cold chain in winter: top Chinese epidemiologist

作者:admin 2020-11-25

China faces virus challenges as international freight resembles cold chain in winter: top Chinese epidemiologist

Photo: Courtesy of Shanghai Airport

 

All international freight transported by air, land and sea becomes just like cold-chain logistics as winter approaches, which means they could become carriers of COVID-19 virus, a top Chinese epidemiologist warned on Monday.

The virus likes low-temperature environments, and the lower the temperature is, the longer the virus will live, Wu Zunyou, chief epidemiologist at the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, told the Global Times.

This adds to the increasingly dire pandemic situation around the world, so the risk of infection through contaminated packages overseas increases significantly, Wu said, noting that daily new cases around the world are currently in excess of 600,000 since the start of November.

Wu's statement came after UPS and FedEx employees at Shanghai Pudong International Airport tested positive for COVID-19, after the airport initiated nucleic acid testing on Sunday for all staff, the local CDC reported on Monday night.

One infected man, surnamed Zhang, 36, is a FedEx courier who works at the airport.

On Monday morning, Shanghai authorities said a 49-year-old employee surnamed Cao from UPS at Shanghai Pudong International Airport tested positive for COVID-19, while the wife of a UPS employee also tested positive on Saturday. Both are being isolated and treated at the Shanghai Public Health Clinical Center.

Sun Xiaodong, deputy director of the Shanghai Center for Disease Control and Prevention, said at a press conference on Monday that the confirmed local cases reported on November 9 and 10 had both been exposed to one contaminated air cargo container.

These sporadic cases related to imported cargos show that COVID-19 continues to attempt to enter China's borders, and China will face severe challenges domestically in winter, Wu said, noting that he is confident China will pass the winter test.

Global Times



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