By Paul Chung
Image credit: @Machs einfach.
A sweeping new ban introduced by the Shanghai Metro operating group may prohibit eating and drinking altogether on all trains and station concourses within the next few weeks.
The proposed ban would be a remarkable departure from current policy, which only encourages riders to refrain from consuming foods and drinks aboard train cars.
However, at this point it appears that no fine will accompany the ban, leading locals to question the efficacy of the new policy.
According to the China Daily:
The draft of the new Shanghai Rail Traffic Regulation is open for public comment until April 30.
If approved, all food and drinks will be banned from carriages and platforms, although no details on fines were offered.
Shanghai included a “no eating” proposal in its 2009 metro regulation, but it was never adopted owing to difficulties with implementation.
Shanghai would not be the first Chinese city to pass such a measure. Last year, Wuhan introduced a similar measure which bans consumption of food and drink on the subway. That, however, led to a dramatic noodle brawl when a fellow passenger photographed an offender of the new rules.
In addition to the food and drinks ban, the proposed guidelines also call for stricter punishments for fare evaders and cheaters who illegally use discount ID cards, such as senior passes.
Shanghai Shentong Metro Group reportedly loses over 60 million yuan in revenue a year due to fare dodgers. Increased fines will vary from five to ten times the price of the ticket while short-term detentions may also be introduced to supplement monetary penalties.