Trains, buses, ferries and planes will be allowed to accomodate more passengers starting Sept. 14, the Department of Transportation said Friday, as it announced plans to loosen physical distancing protocols.
The current 1-meter spacing between commuters inside public utility vehicles will be reduced to an initial .75, before being further cut to 0.5 after two weeks, then 0.3 after another couple of weeks.
Paassengers have long been required to wear face masks and face shields and avoid talking while in transit. This helped convince authorities to increase capacity, said Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade.
Here is the "Adjusted Passenger Capacity of Railway Lines Based on Reduced Physical Distancing" per trainset:
Meanwhile, class 2 modern PUVs and public utility buses can now accept standing passengers. More airline and passenger ferry commuters can also enter airports and seaports.
"There is a need to safely optimize the carrying capacity of the various public transport modes as Metro Manila and its adjacent areas continue with the transition towards the 'new normal' where more workers are expected to return to their re-opened work places and more businesses are expected to resume operations that were stopped during the enforcement of strict quarantine measures," Tugade said.