Federal Minister of Transport, Andreas Scheuer, said:
There are no exceptions to the requirement to wear a face mask.
- The Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure is in continuous close contact with Deutsche Bahn regarding compliance with mask wearing requirements. Further information can be found here.
- With Regulation (EU) 2020/698 of the European Parliament and the Council, published on 27 May 2020, the EU has determined rules stating that time limits for the renewal of safety certificates and safety authorisations that would have expired between 1 March 2020 and 31 August 2020 are to be extended by six months. In addition, the EU has granted the member states the right to extend the validity of driving licences for train drivers that would have expired or would expire between 1 March 2020 and 31 August 2020 for a period of six months from the date of expiry indicated on the licence. This also applies to the deadlines that train drivers have to meet when completing their periodic checks. Germany will avail itself of this option. The exact wording of the EU Regulation can be found here.
- In close contact with Deutsche Bahn to maintain transport operations and the rail system, particularly with regard to staff.
- Cross-border passenger services have been restricted.
- For national passenger services, stable basic services are guaranteed.
- The federal states agree on timetables for regional transport together with Deutsche Bahn and the other providers.
- DB is relieving the burden railway companies and waiving charges in the case of cancellation of train paths.
- Goodwill regulations of Deutsche Bahn have been expanded (exchange of tickets, vouchers, cancellations). Further information can be found here (in German)
- Getting travellers back to Germany: Deutsche Bahn offers free of charge rail services within Germany if a return flight does not land at the intended destination. Further information can be found here (in German)
- Customers of FlixTrain can use their tickets for ICE and IC trains of Deutsche Bahn.
Rail freight: DB Cargo has activated a hotline for new customers, to shift transport operations from road to rail. Deutsche Bahn supports joint charta on strengthened cooperation among rail companies and associations. Further information can be found here (in German).
- For advice and information on transport operations in combined transport, please contact Studiengesellschaft für den Kombinierten Verkehr e. V. (Research Association for Combined Transport) at +49 30 2061376-0 or http://www.sgkv.de/ (in German).
- The rail freight sector is well positioned to handle even major disruptions such as those which were experienced in cross-border road transport. Intensive cooperation between the infrastructure operator DB Netz AG and infrastructure operators from neighbouring countries as well as with rail freight operators using the DB Netz AG network enables a quick and sustained reaction to challenges that are arising from the measures taken to combat the spread of COVID-19.
- The Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure has asked the federal states to allow exemptions for rest periods of railway staff - particularly for international rail freight.
- Further information for employees and companies from the logistics sector can be found here (in German).
Note: in accordance with a Federal Police decree, rail companies have to notify the Federal Police of suspected cases of COVID-19 infections. In the case of a suspected infection, passengers have to fill in the “passenger locator card” for rail transport (in German). Deutsche Bahn is in constant exchange with the federal and federal state health authorities and operates on the basis of the precautionary recommendations of the RKI.
Federal Minister Scheuer:
Many people are currently delivering extraordinary work to ensure our provision with goods and services. In this exceptional situation, we will have to cooperate and jointly ensure that this security of supply is maintained, even in times of large numbers of infections, quarantine or when care options are lacking. This particularly applies to services of public interest such as rail transport, local public passenger transport, water, energy, telecommunications, but also to supply chains in goods transport. We temporarily need flexible rules on maximum working hours for this purpose. A limited loosening of regulations on weekend work, work shifts or the number of weekly working hours during particularly critical time periods would be easy to implement if the bulk of employees became unfit for work. Flexibility and solidarity are indispensable in this exceptional situation.