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Coronavirus awareness higher in tier-1 cities, reveals survey

HYDERABAD: Awareness on Covid-19 and its impact is high among the residents of Tier-1 cities than those living in the Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities, according to an online survey conducted by the researchers from the IIT Hyderabad and IIT Bombay.

The researchers from the two premier institutes conducted the study to understand the impact of Coronavirus outbreak on the daily commute of people during transition phase between pre-lockdown and the lockdown period and to analyse the changes in their travel and visit behaviour.

According to a media release issued by IIT Hyderabad, the researchers surveyed more than 1,900 participants and found that awareness on Covid-19 was higher among people of Tier-1 cities as compared to Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities.

In Tier-1 cities, it was found that about 12 per cent of the respondents switched from public to private mode during the third week of Covid-19 whereas this shift was just about nine per cent in Tier-2 cities and about seven per cent in Tier-3 cities. The study also found that nearly 48 per cent of the surveyed people said that they did not travel to work during third week of March, whereas 28 per cent had the same frequency of travel to work.

Speaking about importance of the study in shaping relevant policies related to Covid-19, Dr Digvijay S Pawar, Assistant Professor at Civil Engineering Department in IIT Hyderabad said, “Given the uncertainties in the minds of the commuters regarding their travel behaviour due to social distancing, it is important  for policymakers and local transport authorities to understand the change in travel patterns.”The researchers are also planning to undertake a study to understand the effect of Covid-19 on vehicular emissions in the environment.

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