NewsNot always smooth: checking corona rules on the train

Not always smooth: checking corona rules on the train

The 3G rule has been in effect on public transport for around two months, in addition to the mask requirement. Most passengers stick to it. But sometimes the situation escalates.

Frankfurt/Mannheim – Csilla Kalazy likes to interrupt her card game to check her vaccination certificate. She is a doctor in an intensive care unit with seriously ill Covid patients, reports Kalazy, who is currently traveling to Switzerland with an ICE.

“I see young people dying, even without previous illnesses, unvaccinated,” she says. She therefore welcomes the fact that the train checks whether she meets the 3G access rule.

Two employees of DB Sicherheit are on the move on the ICE between Frankfurt and Mannheim to enforce the Corona rule that has been in force for around two months: only vaccinated, tested and recovered people are allowed to travel on public transport. If you can’t prove this, you have to get out. If police officers or city police officers are present during checks, a fine is also due – the amount is determined by the federal states. In Hesse it is 100 euros.

“Hello, do you have a 3G pass for me?” asks Katharina Ruthard, an employee at DB Sicherheit, when entering first class. The passengers – it’s a manageable number this morning – rummage in their bags, get out cell phones and ID cards. Ruthard says most are willing to show their evidence and like the controls. Only occasionally do they catch someone without. She has never experienced an incident.

Always in pairs

At Deutsche Bahn, checks are carried out on a random basis and in teams of two. This also includes Eyyup Kurkan on the ICE to Mannheim. He scans the QR codes on the cell phones that are presented to him. A man shows a vaccination card and points to the three relevant entries. He has not yet been confronted with counterfeits, says Kurkan.

The controls don’t always run so smoothly. If passengers cannot show 3G proof and are forbidden to continue their journey, there will be discussions, says Kurkan. “We explain that the rules are just like that and it’s about not putting other travelers in danger.” If necessary, the federal police have to intervene.

Since the introduction of the 3G rule on November 24, this has happened 579 times nationwide, the federal police said in mid-January. 359 of these missions were about passengers having to leave the train. Deutsche Bahn speaks of a total of around two million controls that it has carried out in local and long-distance traffic since the end of November. More than 9,000 security guards are on duty. 99 percent of the travelers would have kept to the 3G rule.

Passenger without a mask

DB employee Kurkan also experienced a tangible conflict at the beginning of the pandemic, as he reports. He asked a passenger without a mask to put one on. The man became aggressive, trying to hit him, but Kurkan managed to deflect the blow. At the next train station, the man was handed over to the federal police.

Other cases are documented by the police. Like the case of a 55-year-old train attendant who, according to a police report, was pushed and hit by a passenger without mouth and nose protection a few weeks ago in East Hesse regional transport. Last week, the federal police in Kassel initiated criminal proceedings against a 42-year-old who spat on an officer in an ICE. He was therefore not wearing a mask and had neither a ticket nor an ID card. At the end of December, according to the police, a 21-year-old attacked a train attendant on a regional train after he had asked him to wear a mask.

Against this background, the railway and transport union (EVG) calls for more use of security services or the police. Each individual case is one too many. Even before the pandemic, there was a willingness to use violence – the obligation to wear masks and 3G would have increased this, says the head of the EVG office in Kassel, Andreas Güth. Most passengers followed the rules, but some cases escalated.

The journey in the ICE to Mannheim is peaceful for the security team. All checked passengers have a 3G proof with them – and on request there are positive reviews of the check. For example, from Andrea Jiinger, who is also traveling to Switzerland: The measure is not a problem for her and gives her security. dpa

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