SNCB/NMBS takes measures after Covid-19 outbreak
On Monday, unions have called an extraordinary national committee with management from SNCB/NMBS, Infrabel, and HR Rail regarding the coronavirus. Railway workers are worried after five cases of infection have been noted in the company. SNCB/NMBS takes measures to ensure toilets are working and equipped with water and paper on all trains.
“Following the railway workers’ concerns about the coronavirus, the CGSP/ACOD urgently request a national commission for the work protection and prevention. Following the case of Covid-19 in the company, certain members, in particular train controllers, feared to resume their work as if nothing had happened. This is why we wanted management to study the possibility of increasing the precautionary measures,” explains Thierry Moers, CGSP secretary.
In the extraordinary national committee with management from SNCB/NMBS, Infrabel, and HR Rail, unions have asked for hand sanitizer gel in case there is no water or soap in the train’s toilet.
Instruction has been sent Monday so that toilets on all rolling machines leaving workshops are in full operating order and supplied with water, soap, and paper. “For the equipment already in circulation, the procedure must be followed in order to bring it in as quickly as possible when the toilets are defective,” notes the union.
The SNCB/NMBS wants to reassure. “The situation is being followed closely. We are in constant contact with the Public Health Department (SPF), and we follow the measures as they go,” declares Vincent Bayer, spokesperson for SNCB/NMBS.
Furthermore, the CGSP union notes that all staff in direct contact with passengers benefits from a right to reserve. They can voluntarily keep a certain distance and focus on safety and information tasks.