The Rapido Shield, which will be worn by the Captain (driver partner) during rides, will prevent any contact with the customer on the pillion seat.

Rapido Back Shields prevents contact between Captains and customers
Atom Urban Mobility Thursday, July 30, 2020 - 15:52

Bike taxi platform Rapido, on Wednesday announced the introduction of ‘Rapido Back Shields’ as an added measure of safety for its Captains (driver partners) and customers. Rapido Back Shields will aim at further increasing the safety aspect of using bike taxi during the ongoing pandemic. 

The Rapido Shield, which will be worn by the Captain during rides, will prevent any contact with the customer on the pillion seat. The Rapido Shield is a lightweight, PVC board that will be attached to the Captain’s back like a rucksack. The shield will cover the Captain’s body and will make for considerable distance between the rider and the captain. The shield weighs 400 grams, lighter than some of the smartphones in the market today, the company said. Rapido will bear the cost of installation, providing it free of cost to their Captains, to further ease the financial burden on the Captains while ensuring successful adoption. 

Announcing the new initiative, Aravind Sanka, Co-Founder, Rapido, said, “Safety of our customers is of prime concern to us. We want them to feel safe and assured whenever they use Rapido. From using masks, sanitisers and ensuring regular checks of Captains, now we have worked on an innovative back shield that will act as a protective gear that will further increase the safety of our rides.”

Rapido test rode the shields in cities like Hyderabad, Delhi, Bengaluru, Kolkata, Jaipur, etc. with around 800 Captains wearing the shield and completing rides. The test run included testing the aerodynamics of various materials to build a shield with the right size and quality that is compact and comfortable for the rider and minimises touch points for the customers during the rides. 

Rapido said it has launched a comprehensive set of safety measures since Unlock 1.0, such as requesting customers to carry their own helmets to maintain hygiene as opposed to providing full-face helmets before every ride and new policy support where the company provides free cancellation if Captains or customers are without a mask.

The Captains also have to follow certain mandatory guidelines like installing and using the Aarogya Setu app before they can go on-duty to start accepting orders; wearing a mask and carrying sanitisers, hair net in addition to the mandatory helmets at all times; maintaining personal hygiene and sanitising bikes before onboarding customers. Captains will also get a checklist of items and declaration that they have to adhere to before accepting rides, which will be done every time a Captain goes online.

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