The authorities have hailed this moment as a success – but residents had markedly different experiences of what is arguably the largest lockdown in human history.

It took 76 days, but Wuhan’s lockdown is now at an end. The highway tolls have reopened, and flights and train services are once again leaving the city.

Residents – provided they’re deemed virus free – can finally travel to other parts of China.


“During the past two months, almost no-one was on the streets,” delivery driver Jia Shengzhi tells me.

“It made me feel sad.”

Wuhan has endured one of the most extensive and toughest set of quarantine restrictions on the planet. To begin with, people were allowed out to shop for food but by mid-February, nobody was allowed to leave their residential compounds.

Delivery drivers became a vital lifeline.

“We sometimes received phone calls from customers asking for help such as sending medicines to their ageing parents,” Mr Jia says.

As the head courier at one of e-commerce company’s Wuhan delivery stations, he worried that such an order wouldn’t reach the customer on time if sent via the normal method.


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