Coronavirus: Singapore Pools complies with health measures by closing live betting venues

Social distancing as seen in the form of good queueing habits at a Singapore Pools outlet at Block 279 Bishan Street 22, on March 22, 2020.
Social distancing as seen in the form of good queueing habits at a Singapore Pools outlet at Block 279 Bishan Street 22, on March 22, 2020.ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

SINGAPORE - From Thursday (March 26), punters will no longer be able to place wagers at Singapore Pools live betting venues, after the betting operator introduced measures that would help ensure that the health and well-being of staff and customers are protected from the coronavirus.

It said on Wednesday that it would shut all Livewire venues for live sports betting and off-course betting centres for horse racing indefinitely.

This is due to the "Tighter Measures to Minimise Further Spread of Covid-19" advisory that was released by the Ministry of Health on Tuesday.

Since last Saturday, Singapore Pools has had social distancing measures in place. It had reduced operating hours, closed off selected centres, regulated access and placed physical separation measures at queues.

Starting on Wednesday, it has ensured that all live lottery draws such as 4D, Toto and Singapore Sweep are held behind closed doors, and suspended the screening of live draws at branches.

While the public can no longer attend the draws, account holders can still place their bets online or via telephone.

Singapore Pools had earlier taken extra precautionary measures such as deployment of ground assistants at its outlets to prevent overcrowding and manage the long queues.

It said it would be reviewing the measures and ensure that they are on a par with the advisories from MOH and other important agencies.