Coronavirus: Social-distancing rules flouted in nearly 650 Dubai taxis

Anyone using public transport in the UAE should keep a safe distance from other passengers

An inspection of taxis in Dubai found nearly 650 breaches of social-distancing rules put in place during the coronavirus outbreak.

The offences were spotted during a campaign carried out by the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA).

More than 6,500 vehicles were inspected to ensure drivers and passengers adhered to safety guidelines.

Anyone using public transport in the UAE should keep a safe distance from other passengers.

Those using taxis should always sit in the back seat and plastic screens to separate the driver and passengers will remain in place.

Face masks should be worn at all times in public places.

“The RTA is keen to intensify inspection campaigns on all public transport services in Dubai, especially during the current climate,” said Saeed Al Baluchi, the authority's director of passenger transport monitoring activities.

“As part of such efforts, we carried out an inspection process that covered 6,510 taxis out of 11,000 taxis operating in Dubai.

“The inspection, which focused on compliance with physical distancing of passengers, resulted in 643 offences.”

The authority inspected the cars of Dubai Taxi and six other companies.

“The inspections also included site visits to the premises of franchise companies to verify their compliance with the disinfection and precautionary health measures taken at their offices to ensure a safe and healthy working environment,” Mr Al Baluchi said.

“RTA inspectors covered the entire facilities of taxi operators and reported full compliance with health measures in place.”

Similar inspections will be carried out in the coming months, he said.

“The Passengers Transport Monitoring Activities Department is keen to mobilise all efforts to combat the outbreak of Covid-19,” he said.

“The importance of such campaigns is heightened with the resumption of normal business in Dubai, which requires continued monitoring of passenger transport activities.”