It has been more than 2 months since the lockdown was lifted. Everybody has slowly started to get used to the new normal. As soon as the Government removed every possible restriction at public places, all these places have started to get as crowded as usual. The fear of the pandemic that people had at the beginning slowly started vanishing. Reportedly, there is a steady decline in corona cases but deaths are still being reported in a few places. It is good news that the recovery rate is growing possibly due to all the immunity growth techniques and witty measures that have been circulating during the lockdown but we have to stay careful and continue using precautions until the vaccine is out.
While most of the people are getting back to their work and restarted trips, the dilemma that is always disturbing people is, the mode of transport. Whether long journeys or short trips, people who prioritize comfort choose to share cabs. Since Monsoon winds are sweeping across the country, share cabs are coming to the form again. Amidst the spread of this infectious disease, is share cab safe? Is it wise to choose share cabs after lockdown? What are the safety precautions to follow while travelling in share cabs?
Share Cabs safety precautions: Guidelines for passengers
Usage of masks
Get ready with your masks covering your mouth and nose before entering the share cabs. A common mistake committed by many passengers is removing the mask soon after entering the cab. This is not advised as Experts say that germs and viruses transmit faster in closed spaces than in the open environment. Earlier, when time did not permit busy people to enjoy their meals, eating inside the cabs saved them an ample amount of time. We already know that we are not allowed to do any such activities that involve removing masks. So, abandoning this habit of eating inside cabs for a few days is safe for everyone.
Front seat prohibited
Share cabs after lockdown started implementing new laws. Online cab service companies have already started restricting the passengers from occupying the front seat as Government has strictly made it mandatory for the passengers to take only the back seats of the cab and not to sit in the front seat. They are either kept folded or pasted with a DO NOT USE label.
Handle luggage on your own
In the circumstance of long trips, you will have to carry heavy luggage along with you but it is important that you should be the only one to carry or touch your personal baggage. Do not let the driver or your co-passenger handle your luggage if they insist to. There are chances of the virus being transmitted from your own luggage. So, it is better to avoid unnecessary direct contact between your luggage and others.
Is share cab safe to travel without a sanitizer? Not at all. Right from entering into the car to exiting from the car, we may come in contact with various surfaces. It is not like olden days when we waited for drivers to open the cab doors. We have to follow precautions and social distancing is a mandatory practice now. Applying sanitizer every now and then especially before and after entering and leaving cabs. A bottle of hand sanitizer will save you from several germs. Carrying gloves and anti-bacterial wipes provide an extra layer of protection.
A couple of currency notes are enough to transmit the virus droplets from one person to another. Online payment is not just a tool of digitalization alone but also a smart alternative to protect us from germ spread.
Government is allowing a maximum of two persons per share cab ride. It is easier to maintain social distancing if there is less number of passengers. Try not to communicate with the other passenger. Plug in your earphones and indulge yourself in listening to music or any recreational activity or even better slide down the window panes and try enjoying nature and do not forget to wear a mask.
Share Cabs safety precautions: Guidelines for drivers
Disinfecting after ever ride
Following safety precautions in share cabs after lockdown is necessary and compulsory for the driver as much as it is for the passengers. The driver should ensure that the cab is properly sanitized and disinfected after every ride. This procedure helps in preventing indirect transmission of the virus.
Usage of plastic sheets and plastic separators
Covering seats with disposable plastic sheets. These sheets can be disposed of after its utilization. A transparent wall between the front seat and the back seat is made mandatory in almost all the cabs. An extra sheet can be placed between the two passengers. This will help both the passengers to remain self-isolated.
Only two passengers
The Government has already guided all share cabs to limit the number of passengers to two. It is the driver’s job to make sure that both the passengers occupy the back seat and maintain proper social distance.
Fresh air circulation
It is advised not to use the air conditioning as we are aware that coronavirus transfers in the form of respiratory droplets. In an event of suffocation and summer heat, use the fresh air mode.
We must make sure that both the driver and the passengers follow all the rules set by the government and the cab service providers. In a case of violation, do not hesitate to cancel the ride. Drivers should be completely educated about all the safety precautions and should be provided with PPE kits.
Although one follows all rules and regulations, we cannot be a hundred per cent sure if a share cab is safe. Opting bike rental from companies like Bounce is a great option as they rent bikes and scooters for an affordable amount which is lesser than that of share cab charges. They also make sure to disinfect and sanitize the vehicles before handing over to users.