Metro de Madrid closes entrance halls and accessways to offer greater protection to its staff and optimise resources
As from this weekend, Metro de Madrid will begin to gradually close a total of 44 entrance halls and 183 accessways to the underground to minimise the risks of its employees catching the coronavirus (COVID-19), since they will no longer have to work in these areas.
This measure will also allow resources to be optimised and adapted to the new situation regarding cleaning, security and maintenance tasks, among others. The number of passengers has dropped off by 90% in recent weeks after the declaration of the state of emergency and the exceptional measures approved by the Regional Government of Madrid and other public authorities.
The Councillor for Transport, Mobility and Infrastructure of the Regional Government of Madrid and Chairman of Metro de Madrid, Ángel Garrido, explained that the criteria taken into account to justify the closure of these entrance halls and accessways are that fewer than 500 passengers are using them each day and that a nearby alternative exists.
“At any event, we are going to keep all those entrance halls open that give access to nearby hospitals, to interchanges or that have lifts”, specified Ángel Garrido.
Metro de Madrid will inform passengers of the entrance halls and accessways affected by closures in the same station. You can also consult this at the Metro Customer Service Centres, or by ringing 917 796 399 and 902 444 403. The information will also be available on the web page of Metro de Madrid (www.metromadrid.es), and on the official app and social media profile of the public enterprise.
This new measure comes on top of those already introduced by the public enterprise of the Regional Government of Madrid to protect Metro staff. Since last Friday, all Metro commercial supervisors over the age of 60 have stopped working. Closing the entrance halls will help many employees, such as maintenance, cleaning and security personnel from using these spaces, thus minimising the risk of contact.
Since the start of the health emergency, Metro de Madrid has reduced the number of staff working in the underground such that there is only one person working in most stations. In addition, the closing times of the underground have been brought forward, and the last service now leaves at midnight, instead of at 01:30 as previously.
Metro is also encouraging people to work from home to minimise the risk of the spread of the coronavirus. It is also promoting more flexible timetables to foster the work/life balance for those employees responsible for caring for children under the age of 12, persons with disability and family members up to the second degree of blood or family ties on grounds of age or sickness that are unable to look after themselves.
The public enterprise is also applying extraordinary cleaning and disinfection measures and has established that doors will open automatically on all models of train on which it is possible to ensure that users do not have to touch the door opening device. Furthermore, one door is always left wide open at each Metro station for passengers to come in and another one to go out, thus ensuring that users do not need to touch the doors.
ADAPTATION OF OFFER
The Regional Government of Madrid continues to adapt its public transport offer in the region to the fall in the number of passengers stemming from the measures approved by the regional government and other public authorities as a result of the situation and spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).
Accordingly, since the middle of this week, the public transport offer in the region by all operators (including Metro de Madrid) now stands on weekdays at similar levels to those at weekends.