Southern Chinese City Halts Local Flights for 10 Days as Virus Spreads

June 13, 2021 Updated: June 13, 2021

As COVID-19 variants continue to spread in Guangzhou, a provincial capital in southern China, the adjacent city of Foshan has tightened travel restrictions.

On June 12, Foshan authorities said on Chinese social media site Weibo that Foshan Shadi Airport would cancel all flights from June 13 to June 22.

Local authorities have also stopped the operations of trans-provincial passenger traffic lines and some intercity bus lines, according to the level of risk. A total of at least 90 lines between Guangzhou and Foshan have been suspended, detoured, or shortened, including 61 local lines and 29 intercity lines. Charter bus services, cruising cabs, online car-hailing, and shared bicycles were banned.

The recent outbreak in Guangdong Province is both fast-spreading and deadly, according to Chinese officials, and “can be transmitted by having a meal together, or by brief nondirect contact.”

Guangzhou, the capital of Guangdong Province, was locked down two weeks ago.

For districts under control in Guangzhou, only a very few freeway entrances and exits are opened for licensed vehicles. Marginal highways were closed except for specific trucks during restricted hours.

Local Outbreak

Chancheng district in Foshan was upgraded to a medium-risk area on May 31. The outbreak in the district was reportedly due to cross-infection triggered by public square dancing, or “Guangchang Wu,” a popular public exercise routine among the older generation in China.

Wang Qiang (a pseudonym), a local resident of the Nanhai district in Foshan, told The Epoch Times that his neighborhood had been locked down since May 28 at 4 a.m. No one was allowed to leave, but only to enter, after the community recorded one confirmed case.

“Someone from Hainan village [in Guangzhou] drove to our district to join the square dance, resulting in cross-infection. … The square dancers have been put into quarantine, and the rest are undertaking home quarantine,” Wang said.

Foshan authorities issued a notice on June 6 requiring regime organs at all levels, including enterprises, schools, and travel agencies, to halt unnecessary trips outside the city or province from June 7. Negative CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus test results are necessary for those who need to travel.

The 2021 High School Admissions Test will be carried out June 26–28 in Foshan, but because of the new restrictions, candidates have to apply for a health code at least 14 days before the exam. Schools will be required to continuously monitor the body temperatures of students.

According to China’s official reports, three areas of Foshan have been classified as medium-risk areas.