Ahead of the resumption of operations scheduled for July 29, the Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC) has declared that its facilities and environs are a no-mask, no-entry zone in
The Manager, Abuja-Kaduna train service, Mr Pascal Nnorli, over the weekend told newsmen that the corporation has put measures in place to ensure passengers obey all COVID-19 guidelines on the trains.
He said the NRC is 85 per cent ready because it know a day like that will come.
He said : “If you pass through our station at Idu, you will see a demo of what we intend to do in all the stations.
“You can see the social distancing marked at strategic locations. Now we have a definite date for resumption, we will complete them in all the passenger stations.
“Again, the first thing we are going to do is to decontaminate all our running stock, because we have parked them for a while, almost four months now and also decontaminate our stations and our offices.
“You can see onboard we have selected the seats that are going to be used, for the business class we are reducing the number by half.
“We used to carry four but now we are carrying two; for the economy, each roll has five, there will be one empty seat in between two passengers.
“And again, we have declared all railway environment and facilities no mask – no entry environment,” Nnorli said.
The manager said the station was expecting a Diesel Multiple Unit (DMU) with eight coaches and two heads, which would be used for the express train.
He said that the full compliments of the additional stocks would go a long way to assuage the problem of teaming passengers.
Nnorli noted that the influx of passengers would be determined after the resumption of operations as some passengers would be sceptical to travel by train.
On managing passenger influx, Nnorli said measures were already in place to ensure social distancing was maintained, adding that security personnel around the station had also been increased to enforce compliance.
“This is about life and death, it doesn’t know big man, middle man or small man, so anybody who is not willing to comply to those protocols we have set, please don’t come to our station.
“When passengers obey simple rules of a stop here, till the next passenger before you move, we have developed a strategy.
“We don’t intend to apply force but instead of one person to come and kill 5000 persons, we will apply force, we are not going to compromise on that, “the manager added.
He also commended the newest coaches deployed to the station, saying it is an improvement from the former.