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Covid-19 Federal Railways: 90% trains running

train passengers with masks

Keeping to the recommendations: these passengers on a commuter train into Zurich wore masks

(Keystone / Gaetan Bally)

Almost all trains are in operation in Switzerland after normal services resumed on Monday, the head of the Swiss Federal Railways has said. But not everyone is wearing masks during busy times.

“We are very happy about how things have gone,” said the federal railways’external link Vincent Ducrot at Friday’s official  coronavirus briefing.

The number of passengers was rising steeply, especially in urban areas, but less so on long-distance routes, he added.

“Taking the train is safe,” Ducrot said.  Trains were being cleaned thoroughly, but there was still room for improvement when it came to passengers and protection measures. “People should wear masks when there are lots of train passengers,” Ducrot underlined.

+ Facemasks advised on crowded trains and buses

There were reports of few mask wearers when services resumed on Monday.

The next stage of train travel measures is linked to the re-opening of the borders with neighbouring Germany and Austria – the plans for which were announced this week.

+ Swiss to re-open borders with neighbouring countries external link  

Resumption of travel to these countries was on the cards from May 25, but could come earlier, Ducrot said.

Masks abroad

It was announced at the same press conference on Friday that border restrictions would be eased for people with partners, relatives or a second home in Austria and Germany. Mario Gattiker, the state secretary for migration, said this would come into force from Saturday.

In response to a journalist’s question about what would happen when people travel by train to Austria and Germany - where wearing a mask on public transport is obligatory - Gattiker replied that the rules of other countries applied: so you would have to wear a mask from the border onwards.

Keystone-SDA/SRF/swissinfo.ch/ilj

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