On Wednesday, South Korea reported its highest jump in the number of COVID-19 cases in seven weeks, as a new cluster of cases emerged at an e-commerce warehouse on Seoul’s outskirts. Even as millions of students returned back to schools, the country reported its biggest jump in coronavirus infections.
Officials on Wednesday reported 40 new cases od COVID-19 infections, taking the total number of cases in the country to 11,265 -- with most new infections from the densely populated Seoul metropolitan area. This was the highest increase since South Korea reported 53 infections on April 8.
An outbreak at a warehouse of e-commerce firm Coupang in Bucheon, west of Seoul, has seen 36 cases so far, the KCDC added.
“It is suspected that the basic regulations were not enforced at the warehouse,” said vice health minister Kim Gang-lip.
“If quarantine rules are not implemented at workplaces, it could lead to a dreadful result of a mass infection.”
Officials assured that the possibility of parcel recipients being infected was low.
After the country observed a decrease in the number of COVID-19 cases across the country, social distancing norms were relaxed and facilities such as museums and churches were permitted to reopen. On Wednesday, more than than two million students returned to classes after a long break of five months due to the deadly COVID-19 pandemic.
In South Korea, the academic year starts in March, but students never returned to school after their winter break as the country was hit by the coronavirus crisis in late January and soon saw a surge in the total number of COVID-19 cases reported daily. The opening up of schools was delayed five times due to the highly infectious virus and in April, all students were offered online classes instead.