TRA recruits staff to monitor passenger temperatures

32 infrared cameras will be in place at major stations by end of March

An infrared camera is tested at Nangang station.

An infrared camera is tested at Nangang station. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Taiwan Railway Administration (TRA) plans to recruit 84 staff with nursing backgrounds to operate 32 infrared cameras that are expected to be installed at major train stations across Taiwan by the end of the month.

Via a press statement on Friday (March 13), TRA said it is recruiting 84 part-time staff with nursing backgrounds to operate the infrared cameras. They will need to re-examine passengers who are identified by the machine to have measured over 37.5 degrees Celsius.

They may also need to carry out additional tasks related to disease prevention, said the TRA. The company said recruitment is part-time and staff will be offered the minimum wage.

The 32 infrared cameras to screen passengers at 20 major stations will be in place at the end of March. As the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak continues to escalate around the world — as of Friday sickening nearly 130,000 people and killing 4,700 worldwide — public transportation systems in Taiwan are gearing up to reduce the risk of virus spread.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has identified 10 major symptoms for a patient infected by the coronavirus, and its research shows that 87.9 percent of those infected will have a fever. The TRA has said it will isolate passengers confirmed to have a fever and report cases to the health agency.

Passengers will be allowed to claim a refund, accordingly, said the TRA. The Taiwan High Speed Rail has similar precautions in place.