Singapore — A possible design fail was highlighted by the public after several elderly diners have tripped over the safety netting covering seats at hawker centres to prevent big groups.
To limit the spread of Covid-19 within the community, only groups of two people can dine in at hawker centres and coffeeshops regardless of vaccination status.
Thus, some venues have placed red netting over seats that diners cannot occupy.
Although this safe distancing measure is meant to keep the public safe, the issue of elderly diners injuring themselves in the process was recently highlighted.
The netting at Chinatown Complex, for example, has resulted in senior diners tripping and falling over.
On Thursday (Sept 9), an elderly uncle tripped because of the netting and fell, reported Chinese newspaper Lianhe Wanbao.
It was reported that the uncle was conveyed to the hospital because he experienced breathing difficulties after the incident.
Hawkers shared that the way the netting was tied posed a risk to diners because it was tied on the table leg, stretching to cover seats that cannot be used.
The netting would come loose and fall on the floor, posing a risk to diners, especially the elderly moving between tables.
Most of the diners in Chinatown Complex are older, and someone will trip on the netting almost every day, shared a stallholder to Lianhe Wanbao.
The stallholder added that the elderly who trip and fall would sometimes end up dropping their meal or crockery all over the floor.
“I was a victim of trip(ping) by such nettings and had to spend five days in hospital. The responsible authority should ban the use of such nettings! I am 69 years old, for your info,” commented Facebook user KC Thong.
“I also nearly tripped at Chinatown Complex hawker centre,” said another netizen. “Very dangerous for those elderly.”
“Yes, please do something. One uncle fell so loud while I was having meal. Thankful he is able to get up by help,” added Facebook user Justine Wong.
According to Lianhe Wanbao, the complaints have been heard, and the netting is being replaced or changed in the way they’re secured. /TISG
Read related: Elderly men fight over seat at Bedok North coffee shop
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