WATCH | After 76-day lockdown, people leave Wuhan as airport reopens

08 April 2020 - 15:24
By TimesLIVE Multimedia

The Wuhan Tianhe International Airport resumed domestic passenger flights early in the morning on Wednesday after the 11-week lockdown in central China's Wuhan  was lifted.

The reopening of the airport marks an important milestone as life returns to normal in the city, which bore the brunt of the novel coronavirus disease (Covid-19) epidemic in China.

The first flight since the city's lockdown was lifted departed from Wuhan at 7.25am on Wednesday, bound for Sanya in south China's Hainan province, with most of the 48 passengers on board travelling for work-related reasons.

More than 10,000 travellers have left Wuhan by plane.

China sealed off the city of 11-million people in late January to stop the spread of the flu-like virus to other parts of the country.

"Because it happened so suddenly, I didn't know I'd be stuck here for so long," said Wang Wenshu with tears in her eyes as she prepared to depart at the airport to visit her parents, whom she hasn't seen since the lockdown began. 

Flights to Beijing and international destinations have not been restored.

China is still maintaining strict screening protocols even though the lockdown has been lifted.