Signs indicating seats which are closed to promote physical distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic are pictured on a public transit bus in North Vancouver, B.C., Tuesday, May 12, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

Signs indicating seats which are closed to promote physical distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic are pictured on a public transit bus in North Vancouver, B.C., Tuesday, May 12, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

B.C. transit agencies encourage face masks, step up sanitizing as Phase Two begins

TransLink, BC Transit will both begin to collect fares again on June 1

Transit agencies across the province are adapting to the ‘new normal’ as B.C. enters Phase Two of its reopening plan.

BC Transit said Thursday that “use of face coverings will be encouraged on buses and at bus stops,” in line with just-released face mask recommendations from the federal government.

In Metro Vancouver, TransLink said riders could “enhance their personal safety and that of fellow passengers” by wearing a non-medical mask. People who do not need to travel during peak times, especially those at higher risk for the virus, are being asked to travel at less busy times.

Both transit authorities have committed to keeping buses well below capacity to help passengers adhere to physical distancing guidelines and have riders enter through the front doors and leave through the back where possible. Both BC Transit and Translink will again begin collecting fares on June 1.

Both have already begun installing plexiglass or vinyl barriers to protect bus drivers and will provide them with PPE, as well as step up current sanitizing measures, including more frequent cleanings and applications of disinfectant sprays.

In a statement, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said the province was working with transit agencies to ensure “reasonable” steps are being take to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

“We recommend all passengers consider wearing a face covering while using public transit, especially during those instances where physical distancing may not be possible,” Henry said.

READ MORE: TransLink returns to near-normal operations after COVID-19 leads to drop in ridership

READ MORE: TransLink, BC Transit to resume collecting fares June 1 after installing new barriers


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

BC TransitTransLink

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Victoria’s Royal Jubilee Hospital took in two COVID-19 patients from Northern Health as part of a provincial agreement. (Black Press Media file photo)
Victoria hospital takes in two COVID-19 patients from Northern Health

Royal Jubilee Hospital takes patients as part of provincial transport network

An aerial shot of Cedar Valley Lodge this past August, LNG Canada’s newest accommodation for workers. This is where several employees are isolating after a COVID-19 outbreak was declared on Nov. 19. (Photo courtesy of LNG Canada)
52 positive COVID-19 cases now associated with LNG Canada site outbreak

Eight cases still active, 44 considered recovered

Northern Health announced on Dec. 1 holiday changes to the medical travel bus schedule for December and January 2021. (Photo: supplied)
Holiday schedule changes for Northern Health Connections bus

N.H. announces transportation time changes from Prince Rupert to Prince George

A Water Quality Advisory is still in affect on Dec. 1 in Prince Rupert after being in place for a month. (Black Press file photo)
Water Quality Advisory still in place for Prince Rupert

High turbidity is creating risky drinking water in Prince Rupert

Janet Austin, the lieutenant-governor of British Columbia, not seen, swears in Premier John Horgan during a virtual swearing in ceremony in Victoria, Thursday, Nov. 26, 2020. Horgan says he will look to fill gaps in the federal government’s sick-pay benefits program aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. premier says province prepared to patch holes in new federal sick-pay benefits

Horgan said workers should not be denied pay when they are preventing COVID-19’s spread

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s coronavirus situation at the legislature, Nov. 30, 2020. (B.C. government)
Hockey team brought COVID-19 back from Alberta, B.C. doctor says

Dr. Bonnie Henry pleads for out-of-province travel to stop

B.C. Premier John Horgan on a conference call with religious leaders from his B.C. legislature office, Nov. 18, 2020, informing them in-person church services are off until further notice. (B.C. government)
B.C. tourism relief coming soon, Premier John Horgan says

Industry leaders to report on their urgent needs next week

An RCMP cruiser looks on as a military search and rescue helicopter winds down near Bridesville, B.C. Tuesday, Dec. 1. Photo courtesy of RCMP Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey
B.C. Mountie, suspect airlifted by Canadian Armed Forces from ravine after foot chase

Military aircraft were dispatched from Comox, B.C., say RCMP

An 18-year old male southern resident killer whale, J34, is stranded near Sechelt in 2016. A postmortem examination suggests he died from trauma consistent with a vessel strike. (Photo supplied by Paul Cottrell, Fisheries and Oceans Canada)
“We can do better” — humans the leading cause of orca deaths: study

B.C. research reveals multitude of human and environmental threats affecting killer whales

A logo for Netflix on a remote control is seen in Portland, Ore.,Aug. 13, 2020. Experts in taxation and media say a plan announced Monday by the government will ultimately add to the cost of digital services and goods sold by foreign companies. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Jenny Kane
‘Netflix tax’ for digital media likely to raise prices for consumers, experts say

The government says Canadian companies already collect those taxes when they make digital sales

Most Read