Mbalula reverts back to 70% loading capacity rule for taxis

Minister of Transport Fikile Mbalula. Image via: Alet Pretorius / Gallo

Mbalula: Public Transport is allowed between 5am and 7pm

A loading capacity limit remains for taxis and passengers need to wear masks

Mbalula reverts back to 70% loading capacity rule for taxis

Minister of Transport Fikile Mbalula. Image via: Alet Pretorius / Gallo

The Minister of Transport Fikile Mbalula has shed some light on road regulations enforced in the wake of level four of the country’s lockdown – announcing that people are now permitted to make use of public transport, but only during certain times.

“All road-based public transport services are permitted to operate from 05:00 until 19:00, with a one hour grace period in the afternoon to complete their trips and drop off passengers”, said Mbalula.

“No person is allowed to use of public transport who is not wearing a face mask.  We call on the pubic to ensure strict adherence to this requirement by obtaining their own face masks in line with the guidance given by Minister Dlamini-Zuma.  While government may provide limited assistance in ensuring availability of masks, the onus rests on each individual to ensure that they do not leave home without a mask.”

Limited loading capacity for taxis, buses

In addition to commuters having to wear face masks, there is still a cap on the number of passengers allowed to travel using public transport.

Loading capacity for buses and mini-bus taxis is still 70%, while for eHailing Metered taxis the limit is 50% – however such vehicles (five-seaters) are permitted to carry a maximum of 2 passengers and a driver.

Air and maritime travel bans remain

The ban on both domestic and international flights is still in place, however the minister did point out that government would continue allowing  repatriation flights either bringing back South Africans stranded in foreign countries or transporting foreign nationals to their home countries.

Mbalula also said ships are still not permitted to travel, under level four, but there are some exceptions.

“In respect of maritime transport, there will be no changes to the Directions regulating the movement of ships.  The ban on passenger vessels and cruise liners remains in place, and only vessels bringing in cargo are allowed to call on our ports”

“However, we will allow the movement of cargo from our sea-ports to either warehouses or final destinations as provided for in the current rules” 

Rail services: Gautrain and PRASA

With the gradual resumption of economic activity in certain sectors and permitted movement of freight, freight rail will resume full operation.

Commuter rail will resume operations gradually on an incremental basis, based on the detailed plans submitted by the passenger rail operators.  Limited services with strict measures to ensure social distancing and other mitigation measures, will be introduced.

The Gautrain will operate from 05h00 to 12h00 and 15h00 to 20h00 with an appropriate peak hour service.

PRASA will similarly adopt a gradual re-introduction of its services based on its capacity to manage crowds, implement effective social distancing and implement other mitigation measures that include cleaning and disinfection of surfaces, trains and stations.