As a part of preventive measures, awareness campaigns over the virus among staff members, health, hygiene, and cleanliness and the use of face masks were being encouraged
In the wake of the coronavirus scare, Chinese officials and employees working on the Padma bridge project will be barred from entering Bangladesh until further notice.
At the same time, steps have been taken to put a travel ban on Chinese nationals, who are already at the project site, to prevent them from leaving Bangladesh.
Dewan Abdul Quader, Executive Engineer and Project Manager, confirmed the temporary travel restrictions imposed upon Chinese nationals to Dhaka Tribune.
A large number of engineers, staff and construction workers from China have been employed at the Padma Multipurpose Bridge, Bangladesh’s largest infrastructure project till date.
Meanwhile, Mahmud Hossain Faruk, senior occupational and health specialist of Padma Bridge Project, has confirmed that none of the foreign or local workers had been infected with novel coronavirus.
He said since there had been no known vaccine for the deadly coronavirus, steps to outline preventive measures and a possible contingency plan were being taken.
As a part of preventive measures, awareness campaigns over the virus among staff members, health, hygiene, and cleanliness and the use of face masks were being encouraged, he said.
Regular contacts and coordination with the Institute of Epidemiology, Disease Control and Research (IEDCR) has been established.
Replying to a question, Mahmud Hossain said that project officials from China had separate accommodation and food catering facilities. He underlined the urgency to monitor Chinese workers so that they could scale down their interaction with others.
The Padma Bridge project director said: “We are not gripped by coronavirus panic, cautionary measures have been put in place. We are in a state of heightened alert and are monitoring the situation closely.”
“We have placed travel restrictions on Chinese nationals working on the Padma Bridge project,” he said.
Engineer Quader could not confirm the exact number of Chinese workers now on vacation in China. A total of 1,100 Chinese are employed in the bridge project.
Meanwhile, more Chinese cities have restricted movements as scientists have pointed to the difficulty of containing infection. Many businesses have stopped their employees from resuming work before February 8.
The Health Commission of China’s Hubei province said on Tuesday that 100 people had died from the virus as of Jan 27, according to an online statement, up from the previous toll of 76, with the number of confirmed cases in the province rising to 2,714
Coronavirus is believed to have originated in a food market in Wuhan, China. The infection has now been confirmed in about 600 people, but the number of infected persons is probably significantly higher.
Human to human transmission has been confirmed but does not yet appear to be common.