Airports, ports take precautions to prevent spread of Wuhan virus
Updated: 2020-01-23 16:04:16 KST
South Korea is also staying vigilant as millions of people throughout Asia are expected to make domestic and international travels for the Lunar New Year holiday.
Authorities have put major ports and airports on high alert while advising citizens to refrain from visiting Wuhan.
Our Kim Dami is at the the nation's busiest airport for us tonight.
Dami what have you learned so far?
I'm here at Incheon International Airport where, as you can see, it's not hard to spot people wearing masks as a preventative measure.
To make this already hectic period of the year run smoothly and safely, the South Korean government has pledged its utmost efforts to closely monitor the situation.
Let's take a listen.
"South Korea's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will closely watch the World Health Organization's decision, and no matter what decision it makes including an emergency declaration, the government will continue to pool all of its equipment and human resources for the safety of our citizens."
South Korea's foreign ministry on Thursday also issued a level 2 travel advisory for Wuhan, advising people to reconsider trips to the city.
The government says 21 people who have shown suspicious symptoms have tested negative, and so far there has been one person from China who has been confirmed to have the virus in South Korea.
The Chinese government also announced earlier in the afternoon that all flights at Wuhan Airport, both domestic and international, will be suspended as of Friday.
This also means there will be no flights from Wuhan to Seoul or from Seoul to Wuhan.
There are usually eight flights a week from Wuhan with about 200 passengers arriving from there each day.
In the meantime, security and quarantine measures are tighter than ever here at the airport.
Ear thermometers and heat cameras are used to check incoming visitors' temperatures, and the authorities are placing those suspected to have been infected with the disease in a designated isolation ward.
The government's quarantine measures also include the sea routes including Busan Port International Passenger Terminal.
In addition, a disease control center will be open 24-hours a day during the Lunar New Year travel season.
Dami, China is a popular travel destination for Koreans during the Lunar New Year holiday and we're also expecting a large number of Chinese tourists to enter Korea. What are you hearing from the travel agencies?
Right, some of those who had planned to spend their holidays abroad are now reconsidering their holiday plans.
Over a million people in Korea will be flying either domestically or overseas during the next 4 days.
And because fears are rising over the spread of the new virus from China, a local travel agency says over 20 percent of flight tickets to China between January and March have been cancelled.
Cancellation requests have been flooding in since the start of the outbreak.
But there are also foreigners coming into the country for the Lunar New Year.
Over 130-thousand visitors from China are expected to come and spend their holidays in South Korea.
Any travelers who have fever or respiratory problems within 2 weeks of traveling abroad are advised to contact the disease control center by dialling 1339.
Back to you.