Caixin
Aug 21, 2021 06:46 AM
CHINA

Shanghai Pudong Airport Suspends Cargo Handling After Two Covid-19 Cases

What’s new: Shanghai Pudong International Airport, one of the world’s busiest airports, halted all freight flights after two staffers tested positive for Covid-19.

The first case was a 44-year-old male Ethiopian engineer serving foreign freighters at the airport, and the second was 45-year-old freight worker, local health authorities said Friday. Both are fully vaccinated. All of their close contacts tested negative and were put under quarantine.

More than 40,000 people in the city have been tested. Of those, 8,151 tested negative, and the results of the rest are pending.

According to current airport quarantine procedures, once an outbreak is found, cargo operations are suspended, and freight terminals are closed for at least 14 days, an air cargo agent told Caixin.

The background: Airports around China are lengthening the amount of time some international aircrews and ground staff must spend in quarantine after containment breaches sparked community spread of the highly infectious delta variant in several regions.

Overworked airport personnel have emerged as a weak link in local and global efforts to contain the spread of the delta variant, which experts say can be twice as contagious as previous strains.

Nanjing, capital of East China’s Jiangsu province, was the site of a significant delta outbreak in June when workers at Lukou International Airport and their families tested positive in an outbreak traced to a passenger flight from Russia. The outbreak prompted the mass testing of millions of people and was linked to subsequent clusters in Hunan and Sichuan provinces.

Quick Takes are condensed versions of China-related stories for fast news you can use. To read the full story in Chinese, click here.

Contact reporter Denise Jia (huijuanjia@caixin.com) and editor Bob Simison (bobsimison@caixin.com)

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