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People encouraged to stay put during National Day holiday

By Wang Xiaoyu | (China Daily) | 2022-09-30

Health officials are encouraging people to stay put for the National Day holiday, and cross-regional travelers are required to present negative COVID-19 nucleic acid testing results taken within 48 hours before boarding public transport.

Lei Zhenglong, an official of the National Administration of Disease Prevention and Control, said at a news conference on Thursday that travelers should also get tested upon arriving at their destinations, as part of the efforts to reduce the spread of the virus during the holiday from Saturday to Oct 7.

He said daily new infections have recently dropped significantly compared with August, and domestic outbreaks are concentrated mostly in the Ningxia Hui and Tibet autonomous regions and Guizhou and Heilongjiang provinces.

On Wednesday, the mainland reported 106 confirmed local cases and 526 asymptomatic local infections, according to the National Health Commission.

"Due to increasing movement of travelers during the holiday, as well as the fast and stealthy transmission of the Omicron variant, we are still at risk of seeing multiple infection clusters," Lei said.

Local governments should tighten precautions against safety hazards when handling people affected by COVID-19, such as stepping up regular checks of vehicles responsible for transporting them and arranging transportation plans in ways to avoid driver fatigue.

According to the Ministry of Transport, about 210 million passenger trips are expected to be made on roadways during the holiday, down by 30 percent from the same period of last year.

Li Xiaoyong, deputy director of the Ministry of Tourism's market management department, said tourist agencies should control the size of group tours and maximum capacity of buses.

"Personnel in the tourism and hospitality industry and working at cultural facilities should be tested every two days, "he added.

As of Wednesday, the mainland had fully vaccinated 90.2 percent of its population. More than 86 percent of the elderly had completed their inoculation.