Friday 29 May, 2020

Coronavirus: Some transport operators suspend service

Taxi operators parked in Half-Way Tree, St Andrew on Friday.

Taxi operators parked in Half-Way Tree, St Andrew on Friday.

Some transport operators have suspended their services across the island amid concerns over the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

Egeton Newman, head of the Transport Operators Development Sustainable Service, a group that represents more than 1,000 operators across the country, said members have decided to pull their operations for the next four days following a number of meetings.

“We have taken the decision to suspend our services for the next four days until we hear from the Minister of Transport, Robert Montague,” said Newman.

“We believe we are at the front line of the problem at this time and we believe, as a public transport sector, we should hear directly from the minister about how we as transport operators should not only protect ourselves, but also our passengers who we are asked to carry from one point to the other,” Newman told Loop News.

Newman also slammed Transport Authority for, what he indicated, were misplaced priorities. He claimed that, amid the threat of COVID-19, transport authorities were focused on clamping down on taxi and bus operators rather than using the opportunity to educate the industry about best practices to contain the spread of the disease.

Jamaica now has eight confirmed cases of COVID-19.

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