MANILA – The Department of Transportation (DOTr) has intensified health and safety protocols in all railways in Luzon.
In a statement issued Tuesday evening, the DOTr said its Railways Sector has taken steps to ensure that both the riding public and its personnel are protected, one of which is the mandatory coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) testing of all workers of the Light Rail Transit Lines 1 and 2 (LRT-1 and LRT-2), Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT-3), and Philippine National Railways (PNR).
“All personnel are required to take an antigen test, with a confirmatory RT-PCR (reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction) test for those who will test positive,” the DOTr said.
After the first batch of antigen tests on Monday, it said 99 out of 696 MRT-3 personnel and 91 out of 354 PNR personnel have tested positive.
“Those who tested antigen-positive will undergo a confirmatory RT-PCR test. Them, as well as their identified direct contacts, have been required to go on quarantine until re-tested and confirmed negative,” the DOTr said.
Covid-19 testing will continue “for the rest of the week until all personnel are tested.”
In addition, the random antigen testing of consenting and volunteering passengers will also begin.
“The DOTr Railways Sector is assuring the public that needed measures, including the testing of all rail personnel for the coronavirus, are being taken to make sure that Covid-19 will not spread in our trains, stations, and depots,” the DOTr said.
The National Capital Region and the provinces of Bulacan, Cavite, and Rizal were earlier placed under the more restrictive Alert Level 3 after an increase in Covid-19 cases over the holiday period.
On Tuesday, active Covid-19 cases climbed to 29,809 after 5,434 new infections were reported. (PNA)