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APSRTC (Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation) is said to have designed a prototype bus with seats arranged in a way that it complies with the physical distancing of passengers.
Image Courtesy: Prasant Madugula, EPS
The organisation has already sent the blueprint of the prototype bus to the Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister, YS Jagan Mohan Reddy for approval.
According to The New Indian Express, the development of the prototype comes after Union Minister of Road Transport & Highways, Nitin Gadkari, recently announced that bus services in India may soon resume operations.
The bus prototype developed by RTC officials in Vijayawada, uses a super luxury 36-seater passenger bus. A senior official from RTC informed TNIE about the changes made to the super luxury passenger bus.
According to him, the seating capacity of the prototype has been reduced to 70 per cent and now seats 26 passengers, compared to 36 on the standard bus. Also, the seats have been arranged in such a way that there is a sufficient gap between two seats, allowing it to comply with the social distancing norms.
The official also informed that, once RTC receives the approval from the state Chief Minister,
They can convert 100 more buses, before the lockdown period ends on the 18th of May 2020.
The transport authorities had announced a complete shutdown of its services on the 24th of March 2020. This was due to the preliminary lockdown announcement to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in India.
The government is yet to make an announcement of whether transport services will resume operations post the 18th of May or not. The decision is still being reviewed by the in-charge authorities in both the state and central government.
However, the decision to build the 26-seater bus prototype is part of the preparations undertaken by the RTC, in case operations are allowed to restart.
Thoughts About The 26-Seater Bus Prototype Developed By APSRTC
The 26-seater bus prototype developed by the RTC at Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh is a great initiative to ensure the safety of travellers amidst the COVID-19 pandemic in India. The reduced seating capacity buses, complying with the social distancing norms could be well received if given approval for service.