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Wuhan flu outbreak sparks temporary suspension of air freight routes

AIRPORTS Council International (ACI) World is calling on airports to implement appropriate measures to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus, aka Wuhan flu, on a global level

30 January 2020 - 19:00

AIRPORTS Council International (ACI) World is calling on airports to implement appropriate measures to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus, aka Wuhan flu, on a global level.

In its latest advisory bulletin: Transmission of Communicable Diseases, ACI World warns: 'The recent novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak is of considerable concern to the aviation industry.



'In the coming days and weeks, ACI expects to see national regulators and health authorities react to the spread of the virus by introducing measures directly affecting aviation and more broadly.



'From an operational perspective, ACI is committed to assisting airports. Airport members are advised to refer to the following guidelines as necessary, that can be found in the airport preparedness guidelines for outbreaks of communicable disease.'



Over in China, transport links, including air freight routes, continue to be disrupted. This follows Chinese authorities quarantining the city of Wuhan (pop 11.08 million) in China to prevent the virus from spreading, including the cancellation of all flights from Wuhan Tianhe airport and major train stations, reported London's Air Cargo News.



Said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang: 'Wuhan city's new coronavirus-infected pneumonia epidemic prevention and control headquarters issued a notice that the city's urban bus, subway, ferry and long-distance passenger transport are suspended. Citizens should not leave Wuhan, and the airport and train station leaving the Han corridor are temporarily closed.'



Some transportation links have also been severed in the cities of Huanggang, Ezhou, Xiantao, Chibi and Lichuan - all of which are located in China's Hubei province.



In response to the closure of Wuhan Tianhe airport, some airlines have made changes to their flight schedules. Cathay Dragon, for example, is temporarily suspending flights to and from Wuhan effective from January 24 until March 31 2020.



Scoot, which operates flights from Singapore to Wuhan daily, suspended flights to the Chinese city until February 3. 'The Chinese authorities have implemented a temporary suspension of all public transportation networks in the city,' Scoot explained. 'Consequently, Scoot's flights between Singapore and Wuhan will be affected.'



China Airlines also stated: 'Due to the spread of novel coronavirus, China Airlines/Mandarin Airlines flights to and from mainland China have been partially cancelled.'



According to the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CC), the airport was the country's 16th most busy in terms of cargo volumes, handling 221,576 tonnes.


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