Air ‘very bad’, standing trips in the subway, public buses allowed | Latest Delhi News


The Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) on Saturday allowed the city’s buses and subways to operate with limited standing space – a first since restrictions were put in place last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic – to use public transport amid the toxic air pollution in the capital.

According to a DDMA order from Chief Secretary Vijay Dev on Saturday, the Delhi Metro may be operated with 100% seating capacity and with up to 30 standing passengers in each coach. Standing passengers on Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) buses and as part of the cluster program are allowed to occupy up to 50% of the total seating capacity of each bus.

A senior traffic official said this means that each 40-seat cluster bus can now carry 60 passengers (40 seated passengers and 20 standing passengers). 53 passengers per bus are permitted in DTC buses (35 seated and 18 standing passengers).

“This will be the first time some relaxation will be allowed to allow standing passengers on buses and the metro in limited numbers to avoid overcrowding,” said a senior traffic official.

Delhi was in the midst of an air emergency that forced authorities to seek solutions to lower the city’s Air Quality Index (AQI), which fluctuated between “very poor” and “severe” zones for much of the week.

Air quality in Delhi remained in the upper end of the “very poor” category on Saturday, improving slightly from 380 on Friday to 374 on Saturday, according to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) daily 24-hour bulletin.

Dev wrote in Saturday’s DDMA regulation: “Given the prevailing air pollution situation in Delhi, the carrying capacity of the public transport system (buses / Delhi Metro) has been increased to minimize the use of private vehicles in order to improve the air quality of the city.”

According to the affidavit the center presented to the SC on Monday, the transport sector contributes 28% of the city’s PM2.5 levels and 24% of its PM10 levels in winter.

Wind speeds are expected to increase today, says IMD

Agencies said the pollutants are expected to start spreading from Sunday, when wind speeds pick up and hit 30 kilometers per hour in parts of the city on Monday

Delhi recorded a minimum temperature of 14.5 degrees Celsius on Saturday morning, two degrees above normal, and rose sharply from 10.9 ° C on Friday morning.

The Indian Meteorological Bureau attributed this surge in mercury over the past 24 hours to dense cloud formation on Friday evening, allegedly due to a depression in the Bay of Bengal.

“There was a lot of moisture and with clouds the minimum temperature doesn’t drop too low at night. From Sunday the northwest wind will be blowing towards Delhi again and although this will add to the stubble contribution, the local surface winds will be good, “said RK Jenamani, scientist at India Meteorological Department, adding that wind speeds could reach 15 km / h on Sunday afternoon, with surface winds between 20-30 km / h on Monday.

The contribution of farm fires to the total PM 2.5 concentration in Delhi has declined sharply over the past week, with the proportion remaining low – at five percent on Saturday.

The order also states that on buses, boarding is only allowed at the back door, while getting off is only allowed at the front door. “The transport department, DTC and the DMRC are responsible for strict compliance with Covid-19-appropriate behavior (ie social distancing, wearing masks, use of hand disinfectants, etc.) as well as the corresponding SOPs of the respective departments / authorities in this regard”, it was said.

At full capacity, including standing passengers, the DTC and cluster buses together transport around 4.2 million people per day, while the metro transports around 2.3 million passengers.

Delhi currently has a fleet of over 6,700 DTC and cluster buses. The city council plans to rent an additional 1,000 private buses to complement local public transport.

(With contributions from Jasjeev Gandhiok)


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