Residents of Wuhan, China stayed indoors last week not because of another lockdown posed by a reemerging coronavirus threat, but because the worst flooding in decades has threatened their city.
The flooding is also impacting US supply chains for personal protective equipment, crucial to fighting the pandemic.
Wuhan, the epicenter of the novel coronavirus, sits along the banks of the Yangtze River, where water levels reached their fourth-highest in recorded history.
West of Wuhan in Xiantao, sits China’s largest manufacturer of nonwoven fabrics used in the production of PPE. Torrential rain has created additional barriers for exporting goods, including PPE, as some shipments may be delayed by up to three weeks, according to a report from Reuters. “It’s just creating another major roadblock here in terms of PPE getting into the United States — it is the worst of times for it to happen but that’s what we’re dealing with right now,” Michael Einhorn, president of Dealmed, told Reuters. Dealmed sources disposable lab coats and other products from Wuhan and nearby regions.