Malaysia Bagus News
Malaysia Bagus News
PETALING JAYA: Reducing the capacity and frequency of public transportation during the current movement control order (MCO 3.0) will only contribute to overcrowding, says a transport expert.
Rosli Azad Khan, a transport consultant with more than 40 years of experience, said this SOP did not make any sense at all.
Rosli said social distancing would no longer be possible to be observed because of the accumulation of more passengers in stations and on platforms.
“The train capacity and frequency should be maintained so overcrowding can be avoided,” he said.
Under the current stricter guidelines, both land and sea public transport services, including LRT, MRT, ERL, monorail, buses and ferries, will have to halve their capacity to that of the previous MCOs.
Senior minister for security Ismail Sabri Yaakob said buses and trains will also see reduced frequency.
Numerous passengers have taken to social media to complain of congestion at train stations with the capacity cut by 50%.
“This measure is poorly thought out. Why are they making life more difficult for public transport users? These are people with low income who cannot afford to own cars or pay high tolls and parking charges,” Rosli said.
Azrul Mohd Khalib, CEO of the Galen Centre for Health and Social Policy, said the public transportation SOPs were making passengers more vulnerable and at risk instead of protecting them.
“From a public security perspective, limiting the number and frequency of public transportation makes sense as you want to strictly control and limit the movement of people involved from one location to another,” he said.
“However, where public health is concerned, this would be a mistake as it would involve the same number of people being concentrated, congested or jammed into a limited number of transportation options within a tight time frame.”
He said mass gatherings of people such as on train platforms would also mean increased exposure, risk and vulnerability to infection.
“What should have been done was to either leave the transportation system as it was or increase the frequency of trains and buses to ensure that passengers were spread out even further,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Public Transport Users Association (4PAM) has urged passengers to understand the new timings and intervals as this would help ensure the safety of every passenger.
It said passengers must try to not squeeze into trains that were already packed.
“We also appeal to employers to allow flexible working hours for their employees due to the reduction in the number of trains and service intervals. If everyone chips in a little, this situation can be managed,” said 4PAM president Ajit Johl.
JUSTCLICK & CONNECT