he number of people in China infected by a new strain of pneumonia-causing coronavirus continues to rise, climbing to 319 by the end of the day on Tuesday.
A graphic produced by People’s Daily shows how the virus has spread across mainland China from its epicenter in the central city of Wuhan. Those areas colored red have confirmed cases while those in yellow have only suspected cases at the moment.
Of the total 319 confirmed cases, 270 of them have been in Hubei province, where Wuhan is located. Second-highest is Guangdong with 17 cases, followed by Beijing with 10, and Shanghai, which is now up to six.
Other areas with infected pneumonia patients include everywhere from Tianjin in the northeast to Sichuan in the west. China has confirmed that the virus can be spread through human-to-human contact.
This marks the second straight day where the number of confirmed cases of the virus has risen by more than a hundred in China, bringing the total a smidge closer to foreign experts’ estimates of at least 1,700 infections.
While the outbreak began last December in Wuhan, it’s only this week that infrared thermometers have been installed at the city’s airport, train stations, and bus stations with those showing signs of a fever not being allowed to leave.
Meanwhile, the death toll also continues to rise with authorities in Wuhan confirming on Tuesday the deaths of two more people from the virus, bringing the number of the virus’ victims up to six.
The virus has travelers more than a little spooked ahead of the Chinese New Year as hundreds of millions prepare to head home to spend the holiday with their families. As they watch others sneeze and cough beside them at train stations, it will be difficult to shake off memories of the SARS panic of 2002/2003 that killed at least 774 people.