Following one week of ground observations from start of circuit breaker measures, NEA provides information on peak hours to avoid at top popular markets. Patrons at these markets strongly encouraged to adjust their marketing hours/days and also consider alternative markets.
Singapore, 15 April 2020 – During inspection rounds conducted over the past three days (13 to 15 April 2020), 19 enforcement actions were taken against members of the public for violations of safe distancing requirements at markets and cooked food sections of hawker centres. These include two egregious cases where the member of the public remained non-compliant and even acted provocatively when approached by NEA enforcement officers, and the Police had to be called in. During this period, 586 NEA enforcement officers were deployed to conduct inspections on compliance with elevated safe distancing measures at markets and cooked food sections of hawker centres. The enforcement officers were supported by another 834 SG Clean Ambassadors over the same period.
Egregious disregard of safe distancing requirements
2 The egregious enforcement cases included an incident where a woman who insisted on having her meal at the cooked food section of the hawker centre at Block 320 Shunfu Road, and turned aggressive when engaged by our SG Clean Ambassadors. In a similar case at the cooked section of the hawker centre at Block 89 Circuit Road, a man, who was seen deliberately seated at a table and eating, hurt an NEA enforcement officer when trying to leave. The Police were activated for both cases.
3 NEA takes a serious view of those who verbally or physically abuse our officers and SG Clean Ambassadors. We will not hesitate to take strong actions against such egregious offenders, including criminal prosecution if necessary. Cases of physical or verbal abuse will be reported to the Police for follow-up, and these cases will be considered separately from the principal offence that NEA will be charging the offender for.
NEA releases information to guide patrons on their market visits
4 NEA has identified four ‘hotspot’ markets with long queues and extended peak hours, out of 39 popular markets where NEA and the Town Councils have put in place access control measures for better crowd management. These include the markets at Geylang Serai, Block 20/21 Marsiling Lane, Block 104/105 Yishun Ring Road (Chong Pang Market) and Block 505 Jurong West Street 52.
5 Following a full week of observation at the markets since the implementation of the elevated safe distancing measures on 7 April 2020, NEA is providing the estimated peak hours and number of persons in the queues at the 39 popular markets (see ANNEX). This is to better guide regular patrons of these ‘hotspot’ markets and provide more information for market patrons to plan their visits.
Patrons starting to adjust their market visits; more encouraged to do so
6 We have noticed that members of the public have started to make adjustments, with more people visiting markets earlier, between 6:00am to 7:00am. We continue to urge market patrons to make further adjustments to visit the markets during weekdays, or at the non-peak period after 10:00am where fresh produce is still available. Members of the public are also encouraged to space out their market visits, such as visiting markets once a week, and not visit the market everyday or even every few days. NEA also suggests the following nearby markets as alternatives that patrons can consider visiting instead:
Geylang Serai Market
- Blocks 13/14 Haig Road
- Block 4A Eunos Crescent
Chong Pang Market
- Block 724 Ang Mo Kio Ave 6
Blk 505 Jurong West St 52
- Taman Jurong Market & Food Centre
Cooperation of all patrons and stallholders needed to ensure the success of the circuit breaker measures
7 In line with the elevated safe distancing measures, dining-in is disallowed at the dining areas of cooked food sections of hawker centres, with effect from 7 April 2020 to 4 May 2020 (inclusive). During this period, patrons can continue to make cooked food purchases at our hawker centres using food deliveries or through takeaways only. No one is to loiter or gather in and around the cooked food sections of hawker centres.
8 Should patrons require to sit and wait for their take-aways, they may do so but they must maintain safe distancing of at least 1 metre from any other person, and not sit on seats that is demarcated as not to be occupied. When their take-aways are ready, patrons should collect them promptly and leave the hawker centre.
9 As Singapore moves into the second week of the circuit breaker period, the continued cooperation of all patrons, as well as stallholders, is required to ensure the success of the circuit breaker measures to halt the transmission of COVID-19 in Singapore.
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