The DOTr said the Light Rail Transit-1, LRT-2, Metro Rail Transit-3 and Philippine National Railways will resume operations with limited capacity.
The STAR/Miguel de Guzman/File
Railways eye limited capacity operations on May 16.
(The Philippine Star) - May 3, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Transportation (DOTr) intends to resume operations of railways for public transport by May 16, or after the lifting of the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in Metro Manila.

The DOTr said the Light Rail Transit-1, LRT-2, Metro Rail Transit-3 and Philippine National Railways will resume operations with limited capacity.

Once the ECQ is lifted, the agency said all rail lines will observe the guidelines on community quarantine it issued last March 14, as well as additional health and safety measures pursuant to Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases and Department of Health (DOH) guidelines.

The DOTr said social distancing of one-meter should be strictly observed by passengers inside the trains and at the stations.

“Presence of markings, signages, tarpaulins and other logistics will be utilized to ensure its firm implementation,” it said.

Regular disinfection and sanitation of train interiors, station premises and facilities will be conducted, and hand washing or disinfectant stations will be installed to adhere to sanitary measures set by DOH.

Also pursuant to DOH guidelines, the DOTr said passengers who are not wearing proper face masks and/or showing COVID-19 symptoms or with a registered body temperature of 37.8°C or higher would not be allowed to enter the station.

Senior citizens, passengers aged 0 to 20 and pregnant women will also not be allowed due to their susceptibility to COVID-19.

The DOTr issued on March 14 its general guidelines for the riding public in line with the implementation of the community quarantine in the National Capital Region, which was eventually expanded to cover the entire Luzon.

The DOTr said then that the enforcement of the one-meter social distancing rule is expected to reduce train and station capacity to 25 percent and result in longer queues.

The agency said operating hours of the trains might be extended on a case-to-case basis to accommodate passengers who are already in queues.

Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade has said the new normal for the transport sector would be predicated on health and safety, where social distancing is a must across all modes of transportation.

“You follow the one-meter rule. You follow social distancing not only while you’re onboard the vehicle, but more importantly while you wait and while you queue,” he said.- With Ralph Edwin Villanueva

DOH DOTR ECQ
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