We refer to Mr Chin Ming Seng’s letter (Seating arrangement at hawker centre does not maximise safe distancing, June 29).
As part of the first stage of phase three (heightened alert) reopening from June 21, the National Environment Agency (NEA), town councils and NEA-appointed operators made markings on seats and tables at the dining areas of hawker centres to facilitate resumption of dine-in in groups of up to two persons, with at least 1m between groups.
Markings were made taking into consideration that tables and seats are fixed to the ground for most hawker centres, and to provide as many available seats as possible to patrons while keeping to safe distancing guidelines.
At 85 Fengshan Market and Food Centre, which has adjoining long tables with 10 seats, six seats were cordoned off to ensure 1m spacing between two possible groups of patrons at either end. This current approach is in line with prevailing guidelines for calibrated reopening to keep our community safe.
Patrons are reminded to keep their masks on at all times at the hawker centres when they are not eating and drinking, not to intermingle between groups and not to sit on marked or cordoned-off seats.
Stallholders and patrons should not tamper with or remove seat markings. At hawker centres, patrons should also maintain a safe distance of at least 1m from other persons while queueing up or waiting for their takeaway orders. We seek the public’s understanding not to gather in hawker centres.
Hawker Centres Group
National Environment Agency