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Saigon Creator of Rice 'ATM' Introduces Machine for Free Face Masks

The worst of times bring out the best in some people.

Tuoi Tre reports that Hoàng Tuấn Anh, a Saigon resident, opened a face mask "ATM" in Tan Phu District late last week. The machine has a motion sensor that alerts a volunteer via a smartphone app, and once a passerby sets off the sensor, the volunteer remotely releases a mask.

Anh is the same individual who created a rice "ATM" in back in early April, during Vietnam's previous coronavirus surge. According to the news source, he is an engineer with a background in smart architecture and electronic locks.

For the face mask machine, Anh has collected over 10,000 donated masks, and is currently looking for more. The machine is located at 204B Vườn Lài Street and dispenses either a cloth mask that can be used up to 30 times, or a pack of paper masks that can be reused three or four times.

The news source adds that the rice distribution stand was copied in Hanoi, Thua Thien-Hue Province and Da Nang, while Anh is currently working with the Da Nang government to install a mask machine in the city, which is the epicenter of the current outbreak.

Since last week, Saigon residents can be fined up to VND300,000 for not wearing a mask in public.

[Photo via Nguoi Lao Dong]