SINGAPORE - Commuters looking to book trips with ride-hailing firm Grab will soon be banned from sitting in the front seat of the vehicle alongside the driver.
They will also have to fill in health and hygiene declarations before each trip.
These are among a series of precautionary measures the firm is introducing from end-June amid the coronavirus pandemic, Grab said on Tuesday (June 2).
"As part of our enhanced precautionary measures, Grab will enforce safe distancing within Grab vehicles by disallowing passengers to ride in the front seat beside our driver-partners.
"This means for instance that a regular four-seater car will only take up to three passengers."
It also said that drivers and passengers will both be able to cancel rides if the other party appears to be unwell or is not wearing a mask.
The party who cancels the trip will not be liable to any penalty.
On the requirements to declare health and hygiene statuses, Grab said its drivers and delivery riders have already been submitting health declarations daily.
"The new online health and hygiene declaration feature will require all drivers and delivery-partners, as well as passengers to confirm that they do not exhibit Covid-19 symptoms, and have adopted the necessary safety and hygiene measures, before they can start driving, delivering orders or booking a ride," said Grab.
"Drivers and delivery partners will also be prompted to take a selfie using the mask selfie feature after completing this declaration."
In addition, Grab said it has updated its ratings and feedback system to allow users to report health and hygiene-related concerns.
Drivers and passengers who are found to have inadequately carried out precautionary measures could have their accounts suspended.
Grab's regional head of operations, Mr Russell Cohen, said the firm is looking to set a higher bar for hygiene standards in ride-hailing.
"The Covid-19 pandemic has created greater awareness of safety and hygiene across all industries," he said.
"Together with our driver partners, we can help enforce new hygiene habits even before the ride starts."