Singapore – A member of the public asked why social distancing in Singapore is only one metre in length when it is two in other countries. The netizen’s question garnered quite a number of responses explaining the rationale behind the precautionary measure.
On Friday (Apr 3), King Ming shared the following question on the Facebook page Complaint Singapore: “Why in Singapore is ‘social distancing’ only 1 metre, when in other countries it is 2 metres? Is Singaporean Covid-19 different from the rest of the world?”
The basis for such a question could stem from the varying advisories announced by different countries. In the UK, people are advised to stay home and only to go out for essential activities like going to work or buying food and medical supplies. When in public areas, residents are urged to practise social distancing and keep at least two metres away from other people as a safety measure in battling the Covid-19 pandemic.
To avoid confusion, BBC.com released a video explaining what two metres looked like, stating that the distance equals three steps from one point to another or the size of a bed or two shopping trolleys.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention included keeping a distance of two metres or six feet from others in their 14-day quarantine advisory for those returning from international travel.
In Australia, people are recommended to stay 1.5 metres away from each other as the country’s social distancing standard set to contain the spread of the virus.
Which leads to Mr King’s question regarding the shorter distance being imposed in Singapore. Netizens were quick to offer the “simple reason” behind the advised length.
Taking the total population and total area of space into consideration, many deem Singapore unable to comply with a social distancing measure of two metres. “If 2m apart, no place to stand,” said Kendrick Ng. Wah NJ added that if “we distance 2m, a lot might drop into the sea…and a lot can’t swim.”
In response to the varying rules in Singapore, Moo Ka Ta Wong asked, “Why most of the countries wearing a mask is mandatory but not Singapore? Same theory applies.” Others noted that it was impossible to even follow the one-metre distance in public transport wherein “MRT or buses we are zero metres.”
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