Malls remain quiet, streets empty and the usually-packed MTR is often eerily abandoned as Hong Kong struggles with a fifth wave of Covid-19. Authorities have urged residents to remain at home, with the health system overloaded and social distancing guidelines tightened.

A usually busy Star Ferry crossing Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour is seen almost empty on February 21, 2022, as the city faces its worst Covid-19 coronavirus wave to date. Photo: Peter Parks/AFP.
A usually busy Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront in Hong Kong is seen empty on February 21, 2022, as the city faces its worst Covid-19 coronavirus wave to date. Photo: Peter Parks/AFP.
A shopping mall in Hong Kong’s Tsim Sha Tsui area is seen almost empty on February 21, 2022, as the city faces its worst Covid-19 coronavirus wave to date. Photo: Peter Parks/AFP.
A usually busy street in Hong Kong’s Causeway Bay district is seen empty on February 21, 2022, as the city faces its worst Covid-19 coronavirus wave to date. Photo: Peter Parks/AFP.
A popular coffee shop in Hong Kong’s Tsim Sha Tsui area is seen empty on February 21, 2022, as the city faces its worst Covid-19 coronavirus wave to date. Photo: Peter Parks/AFP.
A usually busy MTR station in Hong Kong’s Wanchai district is seen almost empty on February 21, 2022, as the city faces its worst Covid-19 coronavirus wave to date. Photo: Peter Parks/AFP.
A man crosses a road as taxis wait for customers on a usually busy street in the Wanchai area of Hong Kong on February 17, 2022, as the city faces its worst Covid-19 outbreak since the start of the pandemic. Photo: Peter Parks/AFP.
The Hong Kong Jockey Club Shau Kei Wan clinic has been converted to a designated Covid-19 facility as the city struggles to battle the fifth wave of the pandemic. Photo: Ben Marans/HKFP.
Photo: GovHK.

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Tom is the editor-in-chief and founder of Hong Kong Free Press. He has a BA in Communications and New Media from Leeds University and an MA in Journalism from the University of Hong Kong. He has contributed to the BBC, Euronews, Al-Jazeera and others.