BEIJING — A 51-year-old air cargo worker has been infected with the coronavirus in Shanghai, China’s biggest city, prompting an immediate effort to contain the virus before it can spread.
The Shanghai municipal government ordered the immediate quarantine of close contacts of the worker and restricted travel for anyone living in Yingqian, the village within Shanghai where the worker lived. The worker, a man with the surname Wang, went to a hospital with a fever and fatigue on Sunday and tested positive for the virus.
Mr. Wang’s four family members and his 16 co-workers have already tested negative for the virus, said Li Guohua, the deputy chief of the city’s huge Pudong district, which includes the airport and Yingqian. The city has quarantined 106 of his close contacts so far and is moving another 75 of them into quarantine, he added.
Wu Jinglei, the director of the Shanghai Municipal Health Commission, said at a televised news conference on Monday that the air cargo worker had not been involved in handling frozen food, a category that China has sometimes blamed for previous infections. Mr. Wang also was not connected to the city’s ongoing import expo, which opened on Wednesday.
Governments in the West have sometimes struggled to find even three close contacts per infected person. China uses extensive location tracking of cellphones and meticulous interrogation of infected people to assemble far larger lists of contacts to quarantine.
Shanghai managed to avoid a widespread outbreak of the coronavirus last winter despite lying in the same Yangtze River system as Wuhan, where the virus emerged late last year. Shanghai set up checkpoints at municipal borders for many weeks and stringently limited the entry of anyone without legal residency in the city.
Qiqing Lin contributed research.
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