Hyderabad : The Ministry of Home, GOI has given its nod for Metro operations to begin from 7th of September. In regard to this, Union Minister Hardeep S Puri, MoS, heading the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs announced standard operation procedures.
The ministry specified that wearing of face mask to be mandatory for all passengers and staff. Metro rail corporations may make arrangements for supply of masks on payment basis to the persons arriving without mask.Besides this metro Stations/ entry-exit gates in containment zones will remain closed.
Operations to be resumed in graded manner, Metros having more than one line should open different lines staring from 7th September, 2020 onwards in a graded manner so that all corridors become operational by 12th September 2020.Daily hours of operations may be staggered initially, which needs to be increased gradually with resumption of full revenue service by 12th September, 2020. Frequency of trains to be regulated to avoid passenger crowding at stations and in trains, are some of the SOP issued.
The Standard operating procedures are
Only asymptomatic persons to be allowed to travel after thermal screening at entry into the stations. Symptomatic persons should be advised to go to nearby COVID Care Centre/Hospital for testing/medical attention. Use of Aarogya Setu App to be encouraged.
Provision of sanitizers to be made at entry into the stations for use by passengers. Sanitization of all areas having human interface equipment, train, working area, lift, escalators, handrail, AFC gate, toilets etc. needs to be done at regular intervals.
Use of Smart Card and cashless/online transactions to be encouraged. Tokens and paper slips/ticket to be used with proper sanitization.
Adequate dwell time at stations to be provided to enable smooth boarding/deboarding ensuring social distancing. Metro rail corporations may also resort to skipping of stations to ensure proper social distancing.
Passengers to be advised to travel with minimum luggage and avoid carrying metallic items for easy and quick scanning.
Operation of Heating, Ventilation and Air-Conditioning (HVAC) system as per the Central Public Works Department (CPWD) & Indian Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers (ISHRAE) guidelines. Intake of fresh air in air-conditioning system to be increased to the extent possible.
Information, Education and Communication (IEC) campaign to be launched for passenger and staff through electronic/print/social media, poster, banner, hoarding, website etc.
Metro rail corporations to keep close liaison with state police and local administration for regulating crowd outside station and to deal with contingencies.
Meanwhile,Government of Maharashtra has decided not to resume operation of metro during September, 2020. Hence, Mumbai Line-1 and Maha Metro operations shall commence from October, 2020 or as State Government may decide further.