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More jeepney routes opened but drivers stumped how to make units COVID-19 ready

A total of 1,943 jeepneys will be allowed to ply the roads starting on Wednesday, July 29, as 17 additional routes in Metro Manila are set to open, the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board said.

However, several jeepney drivers will still not be able to return to the streets because they do not have the means to make their units COVID-19-ready.

“Naghahagilap ako saan kukuha pambili ng ganito, plastic, scanner tapos alcohol, spray,” Reynaldo Estanilla, a jeepney driver, said on Ivan Mayrina’s report on “24 Oras” on Tuesday.

According to the Inter-Agency Task Force, the jeepneys should have a plastic barrier and must be deemed “roadworthy” by the Land Transportation Office.

The IATF also said the driver should also comply with  safety measures such as mandatory checking of body temperature, wearing of face mask, face shield and gloves and operating at 50% capacity.

Department of Transportation Road Cluster consultant Bert Suansing said they decided to add more routes to help more commuters get a ride amid the limited public transportation.

“Karamihan sa mga ruta na ‘yan, umaapak doon sa ruta ng bus kaya pinag-aralang mabuti kung puwede ba ‘yon,” Suansing said.

Meanwhile, the LTFRB said the agency is still mulling adding more routes. —Ma. Angelica Garcia/LDF, GMA News

Tags: covid-19