The Government announced a new protocol that those who travel by public transport must comply with. This is a series of measures that seek to prevent the spread of coronavirus, and which will take effect this Monday. Among them stands out the obligatory use of chinstraps or face masks and, also, that the windows of the units are always open. The decision was made after President Alberto Fernández’s announcement about the new extension of the quarantine.
Through a statement released by the Ministry of Transport they advised “minimize and indispensable the use of buses and urban trains, which must be used for the transfer of essential workers or those with corresponding movement authorization. “In this sense, they asked to” respect social distancing, following the advice of the Ministry of Health. ”
The new protocol
The new protocol consists of seven points, which not only cover buses and trains but also combis.
one. It is recommended to use public transport only in the case of not being able to move by car, motorcycle, bicycle or walking, under the premise that what is lost in taking a little longer traveling, is gained in prevention and health care.
2. The use of the homemade chinstrap or face mask is compulsory in public transport. From the ministry explained that “users must use a protection element that covers the nose, mouth and chin to reduce the risk of contagion, and when removing it, they must avoid contact of the interior with any type of surface and with another part of the face that has been exposed. ” They also recommended “circular with open windows to ventilate the spaces”.
3. Another point has to do with the door used by passengers to get on the unit. In this sense, they stressed that “the entry and exit of passengers is done through the rear doors of the unit. ” In addition, they noted: “The first row of seats is disabled; the driver has transparent physical insulation to separate himself from the passengers.”
4. In case of being a frequent user of the train, it is recommended to respect a meter and a half of distance between passengers on platforms and turnstiles. In the event that the formations are at their maximum capacity, “it is suggested to replace it with the use of buses, since the possibility of having more units and frequencies of urban automotive transport facilitates the necessary social distance between passengers.”
At the same time, a contingency plan is being implemented with long distance buses if necessary at key stations according to the demand required.
5. The more than 2000 units that offer service of combis or minibuses to connect Greater Buenos Aires with the City must follow new guidelines: maximum occupancy of 60%; all occupants must wear masks or homemade chinstrap and carry the certificate that accredits them as essential workers or the corresponding movement clearance; vehicles must remove any cloth material found in the vehicle that could retain the virus in its fabric, except those used in seats and on the sides.
6. To avoid crowding of passengers in rush hour, “companies and businesses are advised to implement staggered working hours both at entry and at exit” in activities except social, preventive and compulsory isolation.
7. In line with the recommendations of the Ministry of Health, in case of sneezing, do it in the elbow crease, wash your hands, with gel alcohol or soap and water, and always keep the distance with other passengers in line, platform and interior of the transport units as an element of prevention for themselves and third parties by sharing a common environment such as public passenger transport.
From the “Emergency Plan COVID-19 for automotive and rail transport”, by order of the National Commission for Transport Regulation minimum hygiene and prevention guidelines were established to prevent the spread of the virus that the railway operators and the providers of urban passenger, interurban, general and dangerous cargo transportation services, and combis services that connect the Federal Capital with Greater Buenos Aires fulfilled.
Among the norms it was ruled: “The compulsory use of chinstrap or face mask by drivers and area workers“that” all units must keep the rooms ventilated. “In addition, the frequency of cleaning and disinfection of units and stations must be” increased and the supply of items for hand washing must be supervised. “
And finally it was remarked that “you must notify and train all staff on protocols and standards issued linked to COVID-19; a contingency plan should be established that establishes places of isolation in case a suspected case is identified. “
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