Passengers with fevers to be barred from six MRT stations

MRT employees look at an infrared thermometer at Taipei Main Station. (CNA)

TAIPEI (CNA) — The Taipei Metro system is to expand its ban on passengers with high temperatures to five additional MRT stations by the end of March, in a bid to curb the spread of COVID-19, Taipei Deputy Mayor Vivian Huang (黃珊珊) said Monday.

The policy, which has been in effect at Taipei Main Station since Feb. 29, will be rolled out at Ximen Station, Banqiao Station, Taipei City Hall Station, Longshan Temple Station and Zhongxiao Fuxing Station, according to Ling Chi-yao (凌啟堯), a Taipei Rapid Transit Co. (TRTC) employee.

A total of 16 new infrared thermometers will be set up in the six stations, not including the one already in place at Taipei Main Station, Ling said.

The machines will screen passengers’ temperatures before they enter the stations, and if they measure over 37.5 degrees Celsius, station employees will take the passengers’ temperature again with an ear thermometer, Huang told reporters.

Any passenger showing a temperature above 38 degrees will be barred from entering the station, while those with a temperature between 37.5 and 38 degrees will be advised to wear a surgical mask, Huang said.

The machines are scheduled to be set up by March 20, and the policy will come into effect at the five stations by the end of March, Huang went on, adding that they are still discussing additional measures for passengers who measure over 38 degrees and are denied entry.

Since the policy was enacted at Taipei Main Station, no passengers have measured over 37.5 degrees, according to Ling.