Cebu City considers return of 1.3K jeepneys
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Cebu City government is now planning for the return of 1,355 jeepneys in the city provided that they follow the guidelines for operations under the new normal.
Mayor Edgardo Labella said that these jeepneys will ply the route approved by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) and the Cebu City Transportation Office (CCTO).
They have been selected by the recently formed Ad hoc Committee led by Councilor James Cuenco based on the routes allowed and the number of jeepneys the city plans to allow operating for the first phase.
“We want a gradual return of the jeepneys, hinay-hinay lang (we do it slowly),” said Labella.
These 1,355 were taken from the 5,000 total number of jeepneys plying the city streets pre-pandemic. Their routes may be modified to suit the present situation, where buses are augmenting the in-city transport system.
The drivers and their jeepneys will still be evaluated from October 30 to November 3, 2020.
Qualified jeepney drivers must be able to submit pertinent documents such as operation certification, licenses, and health clearances.
Prior to returning to the streets, the drivers will be subjected to a rapid antigen-antibody test, which will be coupled with a swab test should they prove positive to antibodies indicating the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).
The jeepneys units also need to be prepared.
Passengers must be kept one meter apart while plastic shields must be installed to further reduce contact.
The city will maintain the no face mask and shield, no ride policy for all forms of public transportation, including the jeepneys.
Labella revealed that they are also mulling establishing disinfection stops for each route the jeepneys to use during their daily rounds.
The mayor added that should jeepneys return soon, they will be strictly monitored for the implementation of health protocols.
Jeepney operations were suspended last April due to the threat of COVID-19.
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