Long queues for the Commuter Line trains at Bogor Station on Monday morning. (Antara Photo/Arif Firmansyah)

Hundreds of Thousands Pack Jakarta's Commuter Trains as People Return to Work


JUNE 08, 2020

Jakarta. Offices in Jakarta reopened on Monday as the capital city entered a transition period to relax large-scale social restrictions. As a result, long queues for the Commuter Line trains were seen at almost all stations since early morning. 

Kereta Commuter Indonesia (KCI), the operator of the Jakarta Commuter Line train, said on average 80,000 passengers crowded the stations in the morning rush hours when the restrictions (PSBB) were in full effect in the past two months. 

By early afternoon on Monday, at least 150,000 commuters had already gone through the turnstiles. 

"There were almost as many passengers this morning as during a full day under the PSBB," KCI's vice president of communication, Anne Purba, said on Monday.


Services on the Commuter Line have almost returned to normal, especially in the morning, according to Anne. 

"Starting today, we will operate 935 trips per day, an increase of 161 trips compared to when the PSBB was in full effect," Anne said.

She said KCI is following the Transporation Ministry's guideline for the maximum number of passengers allowed per car: 35-40 percent of full capacity or 74 passengers.

In comparison, the Jakarta provincial government allows trains to operate at 50 percent capacity.

Anne said some entry gates at the stations are still barred to restrict the number of passengers. Station staff have been trained to manage long queues during rush hours.

"From our observation, many passengers are unfortunately still not familiar with the new health protocol," she said.

KCI staff and passengers are now required to wear a mask, face shield and long-sleeve tops when riding the Commuter Line train.

Older passengers and passengers carrying large belongings are only allowed to ride outside rush hours. Children are barred completely from riding on the train.

"Passengers are checked for temperatures when they enter the station. They have to wash their hands with soap before and after each journey. We've installed 80 new hand-washing facilities at our stations," Anne said.