Passengers at Wuchang Railway Station in Wuhan after the city lifted a 76-day lockdown to contain the spread of COVID-19. Pic courtesy (ZHANG ZHENG | CHINA DAILY) FILE PHOTO
Wuhan: The Chinese city of Wuhan, where the coronavirus pandemic originated last December, witnessed over 620,000 people using public transport on the day a 76-day lockdown, imposed to stem the spread of the disease, was lifted.
The city's transport department said 346 bus and boat lines, seven subway lines as well as taxis resumed service on Wednesday, as demands for public transport surged after Wuhan lifted its outbound travel restrictions, reports Xinhua news agency.
Over 624,300 passengers used the city's public transport from midnight to 5 p.m. Wednesday -- 184,000 on buses, 336,300 on subways, and 104,000 taking taxis, it said.
The number of inbound and outbound passengers also saw increases on Wednesday, as 52,000 people left Wuhan by train, air and bus, while 31,000 others entered the city.
On January 23, Wuhan declared unprecedented traffic restrictions, including suspending the city's public transport and all outbound flights and trains, in an attempt to contain the epidemic.
The total number of coronavirus cases in China as of Thursday was 82,809, while the death toll stood at 3,339.
Although the virus originated in China, other countries like the US and Italy have surpassed the Asian giant both in terms of cases and deaths.
With a total of 431,838 confirmed coronavirus cases, the US on Thursday accounted for the highest number of infections in the world. Its death toll stood at 14,817, according to figures by the Washington-based Johns Hopkins University.
Italy has the highest death toll globally with 17,669 fatalities, while in terms of infections it was the third highest with 139,422 confirmed cases.
Spain ranked second highest in terms of both deaths and confirmed cases at 14,792 and 148,220, respectively.