After more than five months of closing its doors to buses due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Cebu South Bus Terminal (CSBT) resumes its operations, but for 14 hours each day only.
From the 24-hour operations in pre-Covid time, CSBT is now open to the public from 5 a.m. until 7 p.m., CSBT Manager Carmen Quijano told Sugbo News on Wednesday.
The CSBT was closed for the past five months since the start of the lockdown last March and was turned into a “Bagsakan Center” for vegetables, fish and other market produce last April.
With the reopening of the terminal, commuters will no longer have to go to the Lantaw Restaurant at the Cebu South Coastal Road which was used as temporary terminal during the lockdown period. The temporary terminal is already closed, Quijano said.
Meanwhile, fish and agriculture traders from the north and south of Cebu who brought their goods in the “bagsakan center” have now returned to Carbon market, Provincial Treasurer Roy Salubre said in a separate interview.
Quijano said the income from the Province-owned and operated terminal facility have already shown an uptick since its opening, generating an average foot traffic of 500 people.
As of September 9, income generated from terminal fees including taxi, private vehicles, motorbike and the use of the rest room is already “improving,” she said.
She also asked the riding public to refrain from taking a bus ride along the highway and instead use the facility to avoid infection or any health risks.
CSBT is also strictly enforcing health and safety protocols as ordered by Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia, she added.
Aside from the standard health protocol of the required wearing of face masks, face shields and social distancing, the terminal uses thermal guns to check body temperatures of commuters. A foot bath is placed at the entrance of the facility.
Quijano said she regularly announces on the public address system (PAS) the required regulations inside the terminal so as to minimize complaints and congestion. Travelers are required to bring appropriate documents like identification card (ID) and travel pass, she added.
Senior citizens are still not allowed entry unless there is a necessary travel document to prove the need for travel. People aged 21 years and below are also prohibited.
Cebu Province, along with Cebu City and Lapu-Lapu City, is now placed under Modified General Community Quarantine which means restrictions are already eased.
However, the government continues to remind the general public to follow prescribed health protocols, and travel only when necessary so as to prevent another rise of Covid-19 cases in the island. (Vanessa L. Almeda)