Beijing guards against SARS during holiday travel peak

Beijing has adopted strict preventative measures against SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) to ensure the safety of travelers during the Spring Festival holiday season, which starts on Jan. 22.

The Beijing West Railway Station has set up an emergency team of four full-time workers and 48 medical workers, and installed 2 temperature testing machines to monitor the temperatures of passengers leaving the city.

Passengers with a temperature of 37.5 degrees Celsius or above will be advised to stay in Beijing for further examination.

Meanwhile, Beijing's railway stations, airports and long-distance bus depots have also stepped up the disinfection of vehicles and other facilities.

China's transport sector is on the alert after the emergence of one confirmed SARS case, who was discharged from hospital on Thursday, and one suspected SARS case in south China's Guangdong Province.

The Ministry of Railways has urged local railway stations to be vigilant, and to test every passenger's temperature.

About 7.25 million passengers are expected to leave Beijing by train, 310,000 more than the same period last year, during the 40-day peak travel season, which started from Jan. 7.

Railway sources said the number of railway passengers had been increasing since Jan. 1 and the daily passenger flow topped 200,000 on Thursday and Friday. Numbers are expected to continue rising in coming days.

Railway staff are working around the clock to sell tickets and 13 trains have been arranged especially for college students to return home for the Spring Festival, which is a traditional time for family gatherings.

Source: Xinhua



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