Dubai Metro likely to reopen in a week, public transport guidelines issued

The document details protocols to be followed across the transport sector, and applies to the reopening of metro, bus and taxi services

  
Dubai's RTA sterilises the Dubai Metro and stations, as part of the UAE National Disinfection Programme. Image courtesy Dubai Media Office Twitter handle.

Dubai's RTA sterilises the Dubai Metro and stations, as part of the UAE National Disinfection Programme. Image courtesy Dubai Media Office Twitter handle.

Dubai Metro services could reopen as early as next week, according to authorities, who issued a set of guidelines in Dubai yesterday.

The document, accessed by Khaleej Times, details protocols to be followed across the transport sector, and applies to the reopening of metro, bus and taxi services.

Water transport, car sharing, trams and limo services, however, are not covered under the plan and will continue to remain suspended till further notice.

Metro

The first phase involves allowing metros to operate for a 12-hour period, from 7am to 7pm, across all Red Line stations, except those within restricted areas.

The three-minute wait time will be activated during peak hours, and reassessed after a week, based on demand and directions from relevant authorities.

This would be followed by the reopening of Green Line metros for the same 12-hour window, except those stations in restricted areas.

During full recovery, operating hours would be extended to normal levels (20 hours per day), subject to government directives on the matter.

During all phases, social distancing measures will continue to be enforced, and crowd management procedures at the entrances to the stations will apply. All employees and passengers will also be required to wear masks.

Other restrictions mentioned included restricting the use of elevators to a maximum of one or two persons, and blocking escalators to reduce passenger flow to the train platform.

Information stickers would be placed on the floor and seats, and all stations would have dedicated entry and exit doors.

All sterilisation practices and activities would also continue as before.

Buses

The first phase of bus services would also operate for a 12-hour period, and would aim to be operational within a maximum period of two to four weeks.

In the opening stage for buses, the plan called for an increase in the number of operating lines and the reopening of all bus lines across the city.

Bus waiting times and bus types would be modified according to the needs and number of passengers at service stations. Service time would also be adjusted as needed, and backup buses would be provided to support crowded stations.

The bus control centre was also directed to provide adequate support to inspectors and change bus routes to avoid restricted areas.

Restrictions included the continued closure of air-conditioned passenger waiting areas to discourage crowding.

All employees and passengers would be required to compulsorily wear masks and follow social distancing protocols. Information stickers would continue to be placed on the floors and on some seats in the buses to ensure appropriate social distance.

Crowd management procedures would apply at station entrances, and sterilisation practices and activities would continue to be followed.
Passengers would also be encouraged to opt for taxis instead.

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