Visitors driving to Mandai Columbarium must book appointments for peak days during Qing Ming period

Visitors driving to Mandai Columbarium must book appointments for peak days during Qing Ming period

Mandai Crematorium and Columbarium
Mandai Crematorium and Columbarium in Singapore. (Photo: Anne-Marie Lim)

SINGAPORE: Visitors planning to drive to Mandai Columbarium on peak days during the Qing Ming festival period must now make e-appointments , said the National Envionment Agency on Friday (Mar 5).

Crowds at the three government-managed columbaria at Mandai, Yishun and Choa Chu Kang as well as Choa Chu Kang Cemetery are expected to peak during Good Friday on Apr 2 and the Qing Ming festival on Apr 4, said NEA.

The peak days identified by NEA are Mar 20, 21, 27 and 28, as well as Apr 2, 3, 4, 10, 11, 17 and 18.

To improve traffic flow within Mandai Columbarium, drivers visiting on those dates will be required to show an email or SMS confirming their vehicle registration before they can enter and park.

Vehicles that arrive outside their appointment time may be refused entry.

Appointment slots will be released two weeks before the peak days, starting from Mar 6.

NEA also said that visitors intending to visit on peak days are encouraged to carpool.

Alternatively, they can also park their vehicles near Khatib MRT station, and use the shuttle bus service provided. Each trip will cost S$1.

Appointments are not required for visitors taking public transport, and for visits outside of the peak days.

Non-registered vehicles can drop their passengers off at the designated point near the pedestrian gate along Mandai Avenue.

READ: A different Qing Ming - Malaysians simplify prayer rituals amid movement control order

KEEP TO TWO REPRESENTATIVES PER HOUSEHOLD

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, NEA has also encouraged visitors during the Qing Ming period to send only two representatives per household, with not more than eight people in a group, said NEA. Elderly family members and young children should also avoid visiting.

From Mar 20 to Apr 18, the three columbaria will open 24 hours daily to cater to an anticipated increase in visitors, added the agency.

Safe distancing ambassadors will be deployed for crowd control. To reduce the time spent by visitors at the columbaria, NEA will set up joss paper collection booths on selected days.

Visitors should not give red packets to staff working at the booths and within the columbaria and cemetery, said NEA.

"In view of the continued COVID-19 situation and strict safe distancing measures, NEA has put in place stricter crowd control measures to limit crowds, and urges members of the public to exercise socially responsible behaviour to protect our well-being and that of our families and relatives," said the agency.

"Those feeling unwell or are sick should stay at home, see a doctor, and avoid visiting."

Source: CNA/dv

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