Home > Auto > News > Motorcycle taxis in this country get backpack shield to battle Covid-19

Jakarta's motorcycle taxi drivers have a new weapon in the battle against the coronavirus - a plastic shield they can strap on backpack-style to isolate them from passengers.

Usually the most efficient way to get around the Indonesian capital's traffic-clogged streets, its thousands of motorcycle taxis have been restricted to transporting goods during the city's Covid-19 lockdown, eating into many drivers' incomes.

With the easing of those curbs, they can now carry people again too, with the added reassurance of the see-through plastic partition to protect against the risk of infection.

"When the driver coughs the droplets won't spread to the back with the wind, (and) when the passenger coughs they (the droplets) will not reach the driver," said Gusti Afiandi, 40, receiving a shield for his taxi from his ride-hailing company Grab.

(Also read: This Kerala taxi firm has a novel solution for driver's safety during Covid-19)

"With this tool I feel safe from the spread of coronavirus, because I use motorcycle taxis every day," agreed customer Andre Saputra.

(Also read: School drop-out in Agartala builds 'social distancing' bike with electric heart)

The loosening of Jakarta's lockdown coincides with record daily rises in coronavirus infections nationwide this week. Fatalities from the Indonesian epidemic have reached nearly 2,000, the highest toll in Southeast Asia.

This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.