Buses at Miền Tây (Western) Coach Station in HCM City’s Bình Tân District. — VNS Photo Nguyễn Diệp
HCM CITY — HCM City will temporarily suspend the operation of all bus routes for the next 15 days to limit the spread of COVID-19.
The city’s People's Committee approved the Department of Transport's proposal on the temporary suspension of public transport.
The city has more than 3,000 buses running on over 200 routes, mainly serving the transport needs of students and the elderly.
Health experts say reducing travelling is the best way to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the community.
The public has been asked to stay at home as much as possible, especially people over the age of 60 who are more vulnerable to becoming seriously ill if they are infected with the coronavirus.
The department had earlier asked to temporarily suspend from March 28 to April 5 as many as 54 bus routes and reduce by 50 per cent the number of trips on fixed inter-provincial coach routes to and from the city.
Among the suspended bus routes, there are 27 bus routes travelling from the city to other provinces such as Bình Dương, Đồng Nai, Long An, Tiền Giang, Tây Ninh and Bà Rịa-Vũng Tàu.
The other inner-city bus routes do not have enough customers now, mostly because their routes go through schools and entertainment areas.
Due to the complex developments of the COVID-19 pandemic, the city has extended the temporary suspension until April 15.
Vehicles must transport less than 50 per cent of their capacity, ensure that there are no more than 20 passengers at a time, and be equipped with disinfectant.
All passengers must wear face masks at all times.
To support transportation firms that have to temporarily stop part of their routes or reduce the number of trips, the department will set up working sessions with them and consult with the municipal People’s Committee to provide financial support for over 5,000 labourers who will be unemployed temporarily. — VNS