The companies promise that there will be enough space on the trains for social distancing. Credit: Belga
As the new coronavirus (Covid-19) is spreading in Belgium, the national railway company SNCB is taking some additional measures to contain the further spread of the virus.
SNCB has asked all its employees to follow the FPS Public Health’s instructions in terms of personal hygiene. “We have asked people to wash their hands regularly, sneeze in their elbow, and to stop greeting colleagues with handshakes or cheek kisses, which is very common in Brussels especially,” an SNCB spokesperson told The Brussels Times.
However, the company is not introducing any changes to its transport plan. “We are following the FPS’s advice and recommendations very strictly, but no changes are necessary at the moment,” he said, adding that the company is in close contact with the government to monitor the situation.
Both the trains and the stations are all being very thoroughly cleaned. “The focus is on surfaces that are frequently touched by passengers, such as the sides of the escalators, for example,” he added.
The SNCB said it would be ensuring toilets on all trains were working and equipped with water and toilet paper. Unions have also asked for hand sanitiser gel, in case there is no water or soap in the train’s toilet, reports NewMobility.
Towards its staff, the company has introduced more flexible working hours, allowing people to start and finish work earlier or later, so they do not have to commute during rush hours, and extended the number of teleworking days.