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Face Masks and Crowd Control: The Race to Make Your Subway Ride Safer

Available strategies

  • In Asia and Europe, where some cities have already reopened, public transit systems are experimenting with cutting bus capacity, timed ticketing and checking riders' temperatures.
  • In Paris, officials mandate face masks for riders and will limit the number of seats available.
  • Transit officials in London have added social distancing markers.
  • China is using government surveillance, where citizens must download software onto their smartphones that indicates their health status.
  • In China, cutting the capacity of buses is enforced with onboard cameras. Chinese officials also dispense hand sanitizer at transit hubs.

  • Authorities in Hong Kong have added robots that spray a hydrogen peroxide solution to disinfect train cars.

  • In Beijing, officials are testing a "subway by appointment" system during peak hours.

  • To reduce rush hour traffic, major employers in Asia and Europe have brought workers back on rotating weekday schedules, provided them private transportation, and temporarily housed them within walking distance of their offices.

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Face Masks and Crowd Control: The Race to Make Your Subway Ride Safer

Face Masks and Crowd Control: The Race to Make Your Subway Ride Safer

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/03/nyregion/mta-subway-coronavirus.html

nytimes.com

3

Key Ideas

The trade-offs

Transit agencies around the world are wrestling with how to bring riders back safely while considering the financial and public health trade-offs. Simply restricting the number of passengers could decrease the number of people needed at work.

Available strategies

  • In Asia and Europe, where some cities have already reopened, public transit systems are experimenting with cutting bus capacity, timed ticketing and checking riders' temperatures.
  • In Paris, officials mandate face masks for riders and will limit the number of seats available.
  • Transit officials in London have added social distancing markers.
  • China is using government surveillance, where citizens must download software onto their smartphones that indicates their health status.
  • In China, cutting the capacity of buses is enforced with onboard cameras. Chinese officials also dispense hand sanitizer at transit hubs.

  • Authorities in Hong Kong have added robots that spray a hydrogen peroxide solution to disinfect train cars.

  • In Beijing, officials are testing a "subway by appointment" system during peak hours.

  • To reduce rush hour traffic, major employers in Asia and Europe have brought workers back on rotating weekday schedules, provided them private transportation, and temporarily housed them within walking distance of their offices.

The risk of contagion

The risk of contagion on the subway is reasonably high. Its an enclosed space, poorly ventilated and have high foot traffic.

The subway will have to regain the trust of riders. The move to shut down the subway for four hours every night for disinfecting trains, equipment and stations is the first move to safeguard the system. Halting the service at night will also provide time to test new, more efficient disinfecting technologies.

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Do's and Don'ts for Social Distancing
  • Avoid gathering in public places.
  • Keep 6-10 feet distance from other people.
  • Wash your hands often and avoid touching your face.
  • Minimize social contact and limit ...
When Going Outside
  • If going to the gym, maintain distance, avoid crowds, disinfect all surfaces that are being touched, and keep washing your hands.
  • Use alternative exercising options like nature parks with fewer people around.
  • Avoid going to the grocery store at peak hours.
  • Do not interact face-to-face with strangers while at a counter or if you are delivering something yourself.
  • Work From Home option should be utilized.
Points to note
  • Minimize your use of public transportation or take the ride-sharing option as it has fewer people, and avoid peak hours at any cost.
  • Don't go to and don't initiate parties to which a large number of people are invited.
  • Keep connecting virtually with your loved ones and your elderly relatives.

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