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‘No talking’ while on board LRT 1 train

/ 04:35 AM July 11, 2020

There must be safety in silence.

To help keep the busiest rail line in Metro Manila free from the new coronavirus, the management of the Light Rail Transit (LRT) 1 is discouraging passengers from having conversations while on the train.

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But no, riders who can’t control their chatter need not worry about any penalty, though they might feel like they’re back in their grade school classroom where the names of “noisy” pupils are written on the blackboard for the teacher to later see.

Light Rail Manila Corp. (LMRC) spokesperson Jacqueline Gorospe said the no-talking rule is more of a “strict reminder’’ to passengers and that there will be “marshals [on the train] who will help monitor” compliance with safety measures.

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QUIET PLEASE More than just observing social distancing, the management of Light Railway Transit 1 also wants passengers to refrain from talking while inside the trains “to prevent droplets transmissions” that could occur even while wearing face masks. The new rule aims to help stop the spread of the new coronavirus that causes COVID-19. —MARIANNE BERMUDEZ

‘No mask, no entry’

Of course, there are exceptions. Gorospe said passengers can still take quick phone calls as long as they keep their masks on and only in “select, extremely important or very urgent situations.”

“Not allowing passengers to talk inside the train is one of our safety measures to prevent droplet transmissions,” Gorospe told Inquirer on Friday. “We’d also like to remind our riding public to always wear masks or face cover.”

The restriction on speech would also complement the LRT 1’s mandatory “no-mask, no-entry” rule already in effect as a measure to curb the spread of the new coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

Countries like Singapore have also prohibited talking during train rides as a COVID-19 precaution.

“We’d like to remind everyone that when it comes to safety, it requires teamwork and [the] cooperation of everyone,” Gorospe added.

Infected MRT 3 workers

Both the LRT 1 and LRT 2 lines have yet to report any confirmed coronavirus case among its employees.

The Metro Rail Transit (MRT 3) on Edsa, however, has recorded over 200 infections since it reopened in June after the easing of the community quarantine restrictions in the national capital.

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Some 3,200 MRT 3 employees have undergone swab testing after the infections forced the suspension of train operations on July 7.

MRT 3 is expected to remain closed until Saturday as it gathers at least 1,300 employees who can return to work, the minimum number needed to be able to resume operations on a limited scale.

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TAGS: coronavirus Philippines, COVID-19 Philippines, health crisis, lockdown, LRT, pandemic, passenger, Quarantine, Transportation
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