The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) and some transport unions on Monday agreed to enforce the guidelines issued by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 to prevent the spread of the coronavirus at motor parks across the country.

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The Corps Marshal, Dr Boboye Oyeyemi, who spoke during a virtual meeting with transport stakeholders, announced that the FRSC enforcement team backed by mobile courts would ensure that the protocols were strictly complied with by bus operators and passengers.

The representatives of fleet transport operators and road unions who were present at the FRSC headquarters in Abuja, signed a resolution stipulating that passengers in commuter vehicles should maintain physical distancing, and anyone who refused to wear a face mask shall be refused entry into the park.

The stakeholders also agreed to provide sanitiser while hawkers and beggars are henceforth banned from the parks.

They agreed to enforce sitting adjustment in commercial vehicles with luxury buses required to convey 50 per cent passengers, saloon cars (three passengers or 75 %), seven-seater buses (five persons or 71%), 10-seated buses (seven passengers or 70%) and 13-seater buses (nine persons or 69%).

The operators also agreed to stop the use of air conditioners in interstate commercial buses, noting that windows would be opened for proper ventilation.

The resolution read, “All public transport operators should sanitise their parks or terminals at least before and after each trip with an emphasis on areas that people frequently come in contact with such as rails, handles, and seats.

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“There shall also be provision at the entrance to the parks sanitizing points or hand wash equipment with detergent and running water which shall be used before and after disembarking from the vehicles.”

The operators were equally encouraged to adopt electronic payment to reduce crowding at their pay point, noting that use of cash encouraged breach of physical distancing.

“Passengers are also expected to report any public transport operator who fails to comply with any of these guidelines to the FRSC command nearest to them stating the name of the operator, location of the park, vehicle registration number, date and time,” the resolution noted.

Oyeyemi encouraged the unions which included the National Association of Road Transport Owners, National Union of Road Transport Workers, National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, and others, to direct their members to comply with the guidelines.