The coronavirus pandemic compelled New York authorities to come to a decision that they did not have to take at least in the last 115 years. That’s closing down the entire subway in an organised manner. Earlier, the subway was closed during two natural calamities, Hurricane Irene in 2011 and Hurricane Sandy in 2012. But the closure this time is the first-ever planned shutdown. Though the platforms and trains are mostly empty now, the authorities are strategizing how to ensure the safety of the passengers as the ridership might boost up in a few days.
What’s Exactly Happening?
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority ( MTA), which manages New York’s subways, buses and two commuter rail lines, has started disinfecting the subway every night from 1 AM to 5 AM. This cleaning operation started on 6th May 2020. The sanitization workers are not only disinfecting the subway but are also cleaning every single subway car. Since train services won’t be available during the cleaning time, MTA has arranged several overnight buses to cater to the transportation of essential workers.
Also Read: Two Cats In New York Test Positive For COVID-19; Become First Pets In The US To Be Infected
MTA has installed special vinyl shields on buses for the separation of passengers and drivers. Apart from that, it is monitoring the body temperatures of more than 3500 employees each day. Over 80 employees of MTA, including nearly 50 subway workers, have already lost their lives due to symptoms related to coronavirus.
Also Read: New York Couples Can Now Get Married Through Video Conferencing Amid Coronavirus Pandemic
With a total of 36 lines, the New York City subway covers a huge area. It is one of the oldest and busiest rapid transit systems in the world. Closing down the whole of it is truly a big step that the authorities have taken up amid the pandemic. After all, the safety and health of the citizens always come first.