Train service remains suspended in Pakistan due to Coronavirus outbreak. Pakistan Railways has converted all its business class and air conditioned sleeper coaches into mobile isolation wards for accommodating around 2,000 beds for patients suffering from Coronavirus.
Railways Minister Shaikh Rashid Ahmad informed media reporters at the Rawalpindi railway station that these mobile isolation wards are now ready and can be sent to any part of the country connected with railway tracks upon request by authorities in case the existing health facilities are unable to deal with with the number of Coronavirus patients.
Currently 220 coaches have been turned into mobile isolation wards. Each coach has nine compartments, which means in one compartment nine wards are available.
Railways Minister further added that In addition, 100 bed each in all the seven divisions of Pakistan Railways includes Rawalpindi, Peshawar, Lahore, Karachi, Quetta, Sukkur and Multan are now available. Each division equipped with one ventilator. Services at all the seven hospitals are managed by Pakistan Railways and numerous dispensaries are also available for patients affected by Coronavirus.
Pakistan Railways had announced suspension of all passenger trains countrywide in order to check the spread of Coronavirus. However, freight train service continues without disruption as the food supply is of utmost importance.
Railways Minister said that there are more chances that train service will remain suspended for the whole of April. As the cases of Coronavirus are on the rise in the country, Pakistan Railways would not operate passenger train service till normalization of the situation. However, the situation in Pakistan was not worse as in Italy, Spain or the United States.
He told that next two weeks in Pakistan were crucial for Coronavirus and if the virus spread more, it would be brought under control.