NYC subway's overnight services to be suspended for disinfection

Starting on May 6, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which runs the city's subway system, will clean all train cars every 24 hours, news agency quoted.
NYC subway's overnight services to be suspended for disinfection

New York

New York City subways, which usually operate 24/7, will now be suspended every night from 1 a.m. to 5 a.m. to allow trains to be disinfected, state Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Thursday.
Starting on May 6, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), which runs the city's subway system, will clean all train cars every 24 hours, Xinhua news agency quoted Cuomo as saying on Thursday.
The cars have been cleaned every 72 hours since the COVID-19 outbreak erupted in the city.
New York state, the epicentre of the pandemic in the US, has reported over 300,000 COVID-19 cases by Thursday, with over 160,000 in New York City, according to the Johns Hopkins University.
During the four hours without service, the MTA will provide alternative transportation methods such as buses, for-hire-vehicles, and dollar vans to essential workers.
"We'll be launching a new Essential Connector service to continue moving NY's frontline heroes at no cost to customers," the MTA tweeted on Thursday.
The unprecedented plan was put forward two days after Cuomo called the deteriorating conditions in subways "disgusting" and "disrespectful" to thousands of essential workers, who still need to go to work and commute by subways.
Many of the train cars have been "occupied" by homeless people and their belongings during the pandemic, and fewer trains are running during the statewide near-total shutdown, which led to unhygienic conditions and lack of social distancing between riders.
According to the MTA, over 50 transit workers who monitor and maintain the system have passed away due to COVID-19, with many others infected.
"The MTA is undertaking something that people would've said was virtually impossible," said Cuomo.
"This is a joint MTA, state, city partnership. We're doing a lot of things here that we've never done before."
The Governor said it was an obligation to make sure essential workers can get to work safely, adding that one of his biggest "nightmares" these days is that "essential workers say I'm not going to work".
To solve the homeless problem, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said the city will move 1,000 people from homeless shelters to hotels this week.
De Blasio, who joined the Governor's press briefing on Thursday via video conference, said that there are around 6,000 homeless people living in hotels across the city, and the city aims to move 1,000 more every week.
Diagnostic testing has been launched at large city shelters this week and is expected to expand across the shelter system by mid-May. Anyone tests positive will be isolated in hotel rooms, the mayor added.

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