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Policy: Passenger rail in the age of coronavirus
New guidance has been published today to provide information on how passengers should travel safely.
The guidance urges people to cycle, walk or drive to ensure there is the capacity for those who have to travel via public transport.
The Transport Secretary has stated that even though public transport is beginning to revert to a full service, the 2-metre social distancing means there is only capacity for one in ten passengers.
The advice sets out that people who cant work from home and have to go to work, that they should consider alternatives to trains, buses etc. Those driving cars have been asked to avoid busy areas.
For those who have to use public transport, the guidance states:
All operators have been issued guidance to ensure stations and trains are clean and must make sure passengers stay 2 metres apart where possible in stations.
The Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps, has spoken to train operators to make sure they increase the number of train services over the coming weeks.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said “Transport operators and staff have been working hard to ensure that people who need to get to work are able to do so, including crucial NHS workers and all those on the frontline of the fight against the virus. Alongside the cycling and walking revolution we are launching, and clear guidance to passengers and operators published today, we can all play our part by following the advice and reducing pressure on public transport. If we take these steps, all those who need to use public transport should feel confident that they can do so safely, with the space to maintain social distancing as far as possible.”
Robert Nisbet, Director of Nations and Regions at the Rail Delivery Group, which represents train operators and Network Rail, said “As the government has said, people should only use trains if they have no alternative. There will be space for as few as a tenth of the usual number of passengers, so we need everyone’s help to keep trains for those who really need them, so please only use the railway if you absolutely have to. If you do have to travel by train, help us get you safely where you need to go. Plan ahead by buying tickets online and travelling off-peak. Consider others by maintaining social distancing where possible and wearing a face covering. Stay safe by using contactless, washing your hands and carrying hand sanitiser.
Robert continued “As well as gradually increasing services from next week to support the nation during the next phase of the coronavirus response and running longer trains in some places, we will be cleaning trains and stations throughout the day, every day. We will be managing capacity on trains and in stations and increasing signage to help people get around.”
This article first appeared on www.railadvent.co.uk
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