DUBAI – Nearly 346 million riders have used public transport means in Dubai comprising the metro, tram, buses and marine transport (abra, ferry, water taxi and water bus), e-hail rides, smart rental vehicles and taxis (Dubai Taxi and franchise companies) in 2020, that is about 947,000 riders per day, Dubai transport regulator announced.
This ridership level was achieved despite the global challenges forced by the COVID-19 pandemic resulting in ceasing or cutting public transit services in various countries worldwide, especially during the second half of 2020. It also comes at a time that saw the implementation of precautionary measures such as sanitisation and physical distancing to maintain the safety of riders and staffs in all public transit means.
“The RTA implemented top international practices in tackling COVID-19 to nurture a safe and healthy environment for riders and staff of mass transit means. Measures taken were based on three pillars, the first is to ensure the safety of all employees through fostering a sound and safe working environment. The second is to ensure the RTA’s facilities and public transit means are free from COVID-19 hazards to ensure the continuity of services in the emirate. The third is to continue supporting the Dubai Government efforts in fighting the pandemic. For instance, the RTA was keen to sanitise each train at the end of each journey, and carry out intensive sanitisation of the entire fleet and stations at the end of operations each day,” said Mattar Mohammed Al Tayer, Director-General, Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of the RTA.
“The precautionary measures taken by the RTA were rewarded with an international recognition endorsing the efficiency of its COVID-19 measures from Norway’s DNV-GL firm, a premier global entity in the assessment of infection risk control programmes and the management of associated risks, including the performance of health and preventive measures,” Al Tayer commented.
The RTA’s statistics indicate that Dubai Metro riders (Red and Green Lines) served 113.63 million riders in 2020 (74.455 million for the Red Line and 39.172 million riders for the Green Line). Dubai Tram served 3.65 million riders, public buses lifted 95.41 million riders and marine transit means ferried 8.05 million riders. Shared transport means, such as e-hail and smart rental vehicles lifted 15.29 million riders, and taxis (Dubai Taxi and franchise companies) served 109.94 million riders.
The RTA has put in place a comprehensive system for sanitising public transit means compatible with the global practices based on the International Association of Public Transport (UITP). For instance, the system was implemented on all modes of transport including metro, buses, taxi, etc. It covered all the RTA buildings and facilities to safeguard the public from infection. This included physical distancing onboard metro, buses, tram and marine vessels, face masks for all riders and staffs by maintaining ridership 70 percent. The number of riders in each taxi was limited to three riders including the driver. RTA also introduced the scanning of all the staff before the start and after the end of shifts.
© WAM (Emirates News Agency) 2021