Why there will be ‘No More Scoffing’ on the Trains in Spain’s Madrid!

A ban on eating on Madrid's Metro will hopefully stop any contagion. image: Twitter

The Ministry of Health in Madrid has been asked to prohibit eating on the Metro and buses to avoid the coronavirus being spread across passengers.

THE Ministry of Health has been asked to prevent eating on public transport, thus avoiding the manipulation and removal of the person’s mask. The plan is to have the new rule in place before the beginning of the school and university year in September.

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It’s a common site on Madrid’s Metro as workers take the train to commute to their jobs, rushing out of home early in the morning is followed by a quick expresso and a short wait on the platform. After that, it’s a mad rush to cram as many passengers on the train as possible. These days that means you would probably be pressed against someone wearing a mask of course – but what happens when they take out a sandwich and start to scoff away? The mask has to come off and therein lies the problem – it’s a contagious action that could see people within a two-metre radius theoretically catching the virus.

Doctors from all over Spain agree, smoking requires a safe distance and so does eating at a table in a bar or restaurant. It makes sense, argues the medical community, that in very small confined spaces there should be no eating and the user’s mask should stay on. No mention has been made yet of potential fines for the offence of eating food on the train – no doubt we shall soon know!

Spain’s recent new measures in force on Monday (for Andalucia) will go in some way to reinforce the theory as discotheques and nightclubs are known to be the catalyst across Spain for a number of outbreaks. Andalucia has joined three other regions in banning smoking without distance in the street and the blanket closure of late-night bars and nightclubs. More regions are expected to follow suit this week – only time will tell if this latest batch of restrictions will have the desired effect and slow the spread of the disease.




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