Crowded Singapore train during the outbreak

It was exactly a month ago on March 1, Singapore posted its first hundred cases. Today, it blew ten times, breaking the 1,000th mark.

With social distancing measures and a cleaning regime for workplaces and schools already in place, the risk of infection in Singapore should have tapered off like other countries. The measures effective for other countries are not working in Singapore, so, what went wrong?

Unlike imported cases and suspect cases from known clusters that can be easily traced, the unlinked cases are random and its occurrence is irregular. Numbers do not lie, and the doubling of unlinked cases clearly indicate that there is a few super-spreader somewhere in Singapore. Where then?

Without doubt, the only place of public congregation the authorities turned a blind eye to social distancing measures is, public transport.

When a train move, the air from the front of the cabin will flow all the way to the back due to simple inertia physics. Just one single cough from an infected from the front cabin and the virus in micro air droplets will reach the last cabin in a matter of seconds. 1m distancing, heck, even 100m distancing is useless if you do not wear a mask.

The overpopulated island country is still seeing commuters standing back to back, breathing onto each other in trains and buses during peak hours. Worst, most people are not wearing a mask because the Singapore government advised against wearing one in public if you think you are healthy.

The Singapore government is still stubbornly refusing to retract their ill advice telling the public not to wear a mask, no thanks to a WHO official who is now the propaganda poster boy. The trojan horse advised the Singapore health ministry that wearing a face mask in public is unnecessary:

The end result as we know it today: 1,000 cases.

Alex Tan
STR Editor