(SPOT.ph) Commuters who have to go out for essential purposes and rely on the MRT-3 may have to look for other means to get to their destinations. The Metro Rail Transit Line 3 is temporarily shutting down operations starting July 7 after a spike in COVID-19 positive personnel was recorded. Authorities are looking at a five-day long suspension of operations while all employees undergo RT-PCR testing. They are eyeing to resume operations by July 11, or until testing confirms a sufficient number of COVID-19 negative personnel to be able to resume limited operations.
A total of 186 Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT-3) workers have tested positive for the novel coronavirus. Of this number, 17 were working at the train stations while the rest were assigned at the MRT-3 Depot, according to a GMA News report.
The MRT-3 employs a workforce of around 3,200. Those who test positive will be sent to the proper government quarantine facility to recover while those who test negative will help the train line resume operations. At least 1,300 healthy personnel are needed to resume MRT-3 operations at a limited capacity, noted the Department of Transportation.
Testing of the employees will be led by the Philippine Coast Guard with help from the Red Cross at the Palacio de Manila in Malate. Meanwhile, a thorough disinfection of all MRT-3 facilities will be conducted.
To help out commuters, 90 buses in the MRT-3 Bus Augmentation Program will continue. The EDSA busway will also ferry passengers between Monumento and the Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange.
Main image by Jerome Ascano
this strange new world.