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Video: Man takes video in Wuhan, China epicenter of coronavirus quarantine

Hubu Alley, Wuchang, Wuhan, Hubei, China (Ping Lin, Wikimedia Commons/Released)
January 27, 2020

A man living in Wuhan, China has filmed what life is like under quarantine as the city has suffered from a deadly coronavirus outbreak.

Ben Kavanagh, described as a teacher living in Wuhan, began the video dressing for a grocery run. He put on not one, but two masks to cover his mouth and nose, along with a pair of swim goggles to cover his eyes.

Completing his preparations to venture outside of his home, Kavanagh grabbed a pair of gloves to protect himself from touching any surfaces where the virus might exist. He noted he would wash the gloves upon his return home.

Kavanagh’s precautions may be well advised amid new information about how the virus can spread.

The U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has noted the virus can be transmitted by droplets of infected respiratory fluid transmitted when infected people cough or sneeze. People can also contract the virus by touching surfaces where the virus exists and then touching their mouth, nose or eyes. The CDC has advised people to wash their hands thoroughly and regularly.

After dressing for the outing, Kavanagh gathered a wheeled suitcase and a backpack to help carry home his groceries.

Venturing outside, Kavanagh noted that the normally busy city of 11 million people had become eerily quiet. Normally busy streets were empty as he made his trip to the nearby market.

“This is usually a very busy street. All these shops would be open, lots of noise,” he said. “I’m surrounded by apartments and yet, there’s no one on the street. It’s so quiet.”

Later in the video, Kavanagh noted a few cars driving along the otherwise empty streets.

“The punishment for driving is a fine and potentially losing your license,” he said of the current situation in Wuhan. “So these people must have good reason to be driving.”

Upon arriving at the supermarket, Kavanagh revealed for the first time an abnormally busy area with many people. Those at the market seemed to be similarly stocking up on food and other essentials.

He and a friend filled their backpacks and suitcases full of food before returning to their homes.

The video gives an insight into life inside the quarantined city.

China has struggled to handle the coronavirus outbreak, which has resulted in more than 2500 confirmed cases and which has resulted in 80 deaths.

Travel is restricted in and out of Wuhan as part of the quarantine effort. As many as 17 other cities in China’s Hubei province have also come under travel restrictions. In total, some 56 million people have been locked down in the province where the virus first began.