Shanghai traffic police said on Friday that more gates will be opened at expressway entrances to Shanghai to address congestion.
Any vehicle into the city has to go through one of the nine police check stations on expressways where all vehicle occupants have to have their temperatures taken. This has caused congestion on several expressways, and that is expected to increase as people who had left Shanghai for the Chinese New Year holiday return.
Police said the most congestion was at the Zhuqiao check station on the G15 Expressway. By 12pm on Friday, four new lanes were opened, making a total of nine lanes available for traffic.
More lanes will later be opened at check stations on the G2 and S32 expressways with more trained staff deployed, police said.
ETC data showed that more than 600,000 vehicles which had left Shanghai could be returning over the next few days, according to the police.
They are advising returning motorists to avoid peak hours and the most congested expressways such as the G15 and G2.
Since 2pm on January 27, when health check staff from 114 expressway tollgates began to be deployed to the nine check stations, a total of 370,000 vehicles and 850,000 people have been checked, police said.
Currently, there are four police officers and assistants as well as health workers, law enforcers from the transportation commission and maintenance workers at each open lane.
If a suspicious case, or someone with a fever, is found, that person will be taken from his or her car and temporarily isolated. The car will be towed to a designated place for disinfection, and the person involved taken to hospital for treatment.
Police said people were cooperative and understanding when waiting in line for checks.
In Qingpu District, where there are six such check stations, at least 108 medical workers work in three shifts a day, the district’s health authorities said.
People from Hubei Province who have a fever will be taken to Zhongshan Hospital’s Qingpu branch by ambulance, while those with no fever will be subject to 14-day medical observation at home. People not from Hubei but with a fever will be transported to Zhujiajiao People’s Hospital, while those who don't have a fever will be given a notice on the coronavirus.
At Hukun check station on the G60 Expressway, the largest gateway to Shanghai in the southwestern part of the city, Ding Yang serves as the vice head of the station.
Ding told Shanghai Daily that all police officers in Songjiang District have been on duty since January 26, and at the check station, 50 police officers and 60 assistants work in three eight-hour shifts every day. More lanes were opened there on January 28.
“If a person is found to have a little fever," Ding said, "we will keep him or her for a while and give a test again, because sometimes air-conditioning in cars can influence the first result."
Ding also said everyone was very cooperative when being checked.