Home > News > News Releases > Wearing is caring: Saint John Transit thanks riders for wearing masks while they are on the bus, and encourages everyone to keep our community safe

Wearing is caring: Saint John Transit thanks riders for wearing masks while they are on the bus, and encourages everyone to keep our community safe

07-Jul-2020

On June 29, Saint John Transit increased the level of ridership on all buses, with the requirement for riders to wear a mask. While compliance from riders has been good since the initial change, with the majority of people wearing masks, Saint John Transit General Manager Marc Dionne would like to continue with the effort to educate the public and see if they can further increase mask use in the coming weeks. 

“Ideally, we will maintain high compliance levels for those who are able to wear masks so that we can maintain our service levels, and possibly even increase them when we know it is safe to do so,” said Dionne. “If we don’t see good compliance, we may move in the opposite direction and have no choice but to reduce our capacity numbers back to nine per bus.”

Saint John Transit continues to conduct random spot checks on the bus routes to monitor compliance levels. As of July 7, spot checks showed mask use for all riders was close to 85 per cent, or higher. While the requirement to wear a mask does not include young children and people who have a disability or medical condition that prevents them from wearing one, it is ultimately up to the person getting on the bus to know if they are exempt or not. 

“We certainly understand that some people are unable to wear a mask, and if those are the circumstances, we won't be requiring that they do,” said Dionne.

Those who are able to wear a mask or cloth covering of some sort are asked to, and Dionne says that efforts will continue to educate and inform the public on the importance of wearing a mask while riding the bus. Mask use signs are installed near the entrances of all the buses, and Saint John Transit will continue to remind the public of the requirement through online notices and regular reminders from the drivers. 

The mask requirement of Saint John Transit is similar to that of other major transit services within New Brunswick, and in other parts of the country. 

“As individuals and service providers, we have a shared responsibility to help protect the health and safety of all members of our community,” adds Dionne. “Public safety is certainly the top priority for Saint John Transit, and we are pleased to be able to offer our riders a safe, valued and reliable service. We thank the public for their support and compliance with public health requirements and guidelines.”

Since March, Saint John Transit has worked hard to implement several measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19, including: 
• Spaced seating arrangements to support social distancing requirements  
• Hand sanitizer at the front of the bus
• Protective shields to separate drivers from passengers
• One-direction boarding from the front of the bus and exiting from the rear
• Signage to promote social distancing and mask requirements 
• Enhanced cleaning schedule for all buses

Marc Dionne - Saint John Transit
 
Marc Dionne, General Manager of Saint John Transit, boards a City bus.

 

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