BEIJING: Nearly 100,000 Lunar New Year travellers in China were stranded in the city of Guangzhou, police said, as snow and ice disrupted the world’s largest annual human migration.
Many trains to the capital of the southern province of Guangdong were delayed after north and central China were hit by the big freeze, leaving no transport available for those waiting to leave.
Police said on a verified microblog that the numbers stuck at two of the city’s main stations, Guangzhou and Guangzhou East, reached nearly 100,000 in total on Monday, prompting the mobilization of almost 4,000 police and security guards to maintain order at the sites, it said.
As China’s manufacturing powerhouse, Guangdong is a major hub for the vast numbers of migrant workers who leave their homes in China’s countryside to labour in its factories.
Many only return home once a year, when tradition dictates all family members must gather before midnight on the eve of the Lunar New Year, which falls on February 8 this time.
Much of China was struck by a teeth-chattering cold snap late last month that broke decades-old records, with snow falling in some areas for the first time in years.