Coronavirus Singapore

Driving centre denies some students entry over proximity to cases

CDC had taken the additional steps to safeguard the safety of its staff and students.
CDC had taken the additional steps to safeguard the safety of its staff and students.ST PHOTO: NG SOR LUAN

Some students attending lessons at ComfortDelGro Driving Centre (CDC) have been turned away as their TraceTogether apps showed that they had been in close proximity to Covid-19 cases.

Separately, the two cruise lines here that operate cruises to nowhere have also disallowed guests who have potentially been exposed to the virus from sailing. But TraceTogether app data is intended only for personal reference, the Government said yesterday.

The Straits Times is aware of at least two driving school students who were refused admittance after entry checks began on Monday.

A 25-year-old National University of Singapore undergraduate who gave his name as Mr Chua said he was supposed to take his driving test on Monday, but was denied entry to the CDC in Ubi, which was "quite ridiculous".

"I remember (the Health Ministry) and the media said we could continue with our daily activities and just take note of our health for the next 14 days."

Fellow driving student Gladys Chong, 27, was frustrated that she did not receive a notification from CDC about the new measure.

Last night, the TraceTogether website was updated to emphasise that anyone assessed to have been a close contact of a Covid-19 case would have been called by the Ministry of Health.

"The TraceTogether team is aware that a few businesses are using information displayed under the 'Covid Health Status' section of the app or the 'history' tab to grant or deny members of the public access to their premises," it said.

"These app features are intended for personal reference and care. We are working with MOH and the relevant agencies to address this and will provide an update once it's ready."

Ms Tammy Tan, ComfortDelGro's group chief branding and communications officer, said CDC had taken the additional steps to safeguard the safety of its staff and students.

Transport company ComfortDelGro runs the driving centre in Ubi. Anyone who wants to enter the premises must do so with the TraceTogether app, a TraceTogether token or his NRIC, she noted.

This began on May 3 and was announced on the driving centre's website and MyCDC app on the same day, Ms Tan added.

ComfortDelGro did not respond to queries about how its staff ascertain whether students have had possible exposures if they do not check in with their TraceTogether app, and opt to use their ICs instead.

The CDC's website and app state that students whose theory or practical lessons fall within the 14 days from the date of possible exposure should cancel online in advance.

Ms Tan added: "We fully understand how inconvenient this can be for learners and will try to help with rescheduling as needed."

In a Facebook post on Wednesday, Dream Cruises announced that passengers of World Dream whose TraceTogether app indicated possible exposure are prohibited from sailing between today and May 19. Those who were at Tan Tock Seng Hospital from April 18 onwards are also barred.

Guests of the Royal Caribbean were also notified yesterday morning that those with "possible exposure" on their TraceTogether app or token will be denied boarding, together with their travelling party.

Those who wish to cancel their cruise due to the prohibition can apply for a full refund, said Royal Caribbean.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 07, 2021, with the headline 'Driving centre denies some students entry over proximity to cases'. Subscribe