92 MRT-3 workers test positive for COVID-19

At least 92 personnel of MRT-3 have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, prompting the railway's management to adjust its operations starting July 6, a source at the Department of Transportation (DOTr) said Wednesday.

This, after the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) directed the management to conduct a swab test of all their personnel.

The infected workers are under quarantine, the DOTr official said. The MRT-3 depot recorded twenty-five cases last week, and the swab test identified 67 more on Tuesday.

The series of tests started after a worker of the railways' maintenance service provider, Sumitomo-MHI-TESPI, tested positive during the first batch of testing on June 11. The patient's last day at the depot was June 8.

The MRT-3 management said the affected workers did not have any direct contact with station personnel and passengers.

The MRT-3's maintenance service provider will push through with the operations but at reduced capacity. This move will mean fewer trains will be rolled out for operations.

The railway runs 12 to 15 train sets since Metro Manila shifted to the relaxed general community quarantine in June. When MRT-3's reduced operations will begin, on-duty station and depot personnel will be required to wear full PPEs.

The Department of Transportation meanwhile will boost its Bus Augmentation Program and EDSA Busway service to fill in for the MRT-3's reduced capacity.

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