Govt Won't Raise Commuter Line Capacity Despite Long Lines

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Markus Wisnu Murti

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  • Would-be passengers of KRL Commuterline at Bekasi Station, Bekasi city, West Java, Monday, June 22, 2020. TEMPO/Hilman Fathurrahman W

    Would-be passengers of KRL Commuterline at Bekasi Station, Bekasi city, West Java, Monday, June 22, 2020. TEMPO/Hilman Fathurrahman W

    TEMPO.CO, JakartaThe Transportation Ministry ensured it would not increase the capacity of Commuter Line or KRL passengers despite the increasing number of commuters. The train capacity remains at 45 percent of the total.

    “We consider that increasing the capacity while the daily infection rate [of COVID-19] is still high is not the right decision,” said the ministry’s spokesperson Adita Irawati via text message to Tempo on Monday, July 6.

    Instead of increasing the quota, Adita said the government needed to have another look at the regulation and the supervision of the division of employees’ working time across the Greater Jakarta area or Jabodetabek in a bid to alleviate the queues to comply with the policy issued by the national COVID-19 mitigation task force.

    Adita explained the division of working hours or shifts has not been maximized yet. “So it is not effective to manage people’s activity hours, which leads to long lines of commuters in certain hours,” she said. The issue has been negotiated several times with related ministries, local government, and the task force.

    State-owned train operator PT KAI has apologized to train users for the long lines. KAI CEO Didiek Hartantyo said the lines were made so as to comply with the physical distancing order, both at stations and on train cars.

    According to him, the increase in the number of commuters during peak hours is inevitable. “KAI calls on people to avoid rush hours to reach Jakarta using KRL. Check the KAI’s social media @commuterline and KRL Access application to find out the queue conditions at a number of departure stations,” Didiek said.

    Read: KCI Asks Commuters to Wear Face Shields

    FRANCISCA CHRISTY ROSANA