•Passengers boarding the SGR between January and March this year dropped by 2.8 per cent to 303063 compared to 311707 in the same period last year due to the pandemic.
•In order to comply with the Kenyan government's SGR requirement that no more than 60 per cent of seats be filled, Afristar will refund tickets purchased during the pre-sale period.
The coronavirus has been causing disruptions in the travel industry with suspension of flights to various destinations and the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) has also felt the heat.
Passengers boarding the SGR between January and March this year dropped by 2.8 per cent to 303,063 compared to 311,707 in the same period last year.
SGR operator, Afristar has set measures to contain the spread of the coronavirus and ensure the safety of staff and passengers.
In order to comply with the Kenyan government's SGR requirement that no more than 60 per cent of seats be filled, the operator will refund tickets purchased during the pre-sale period.
The operator and Kenya Railways are also conducting temperature checks at stations that attract high volumes of passengers.
They have also organized for deep cleaning and decontamination of trains upon the disembarkation of passengers.
To ensure personal hygiene, hand sanitizers and soap have been placed at each sink in the trains and at entries to the boarding and disembarkation areas.
Passengers are also advised to keep social distancing.
All customers facing employees wear gloves and face masks while each train is equipped with a separate isolation coach designated for passengers who have a high fever.
In addition, the stations have a quarantine area where those presenting with high fever are placed.
To safeguard its staff, the operator issued a directive in January instructing all staff not to travel abroad, while those who had travelled abroad prior to the outbreak were not allowed to travel back to Kenya.
In case a staff member who had travelled abroad was required to physically report to work, the company has enforced the 14-day quarantine period, complete with isolation areas.
The service provider has also cooperated with the Ministry of Health to conduct regular inspections.
To ensure staff are well and do not pose a risk to their colleagues and passengers, all employees are required to provide a daily update of their overall health.
Afristar and Kenya Railways will continue to monitor the situation and periodically update passengers.