Over the course of the COVID-19 crisis, the National Transport Authority (NTA) has worked closely with the Department of Transport, Tourism, and Sport and our transport operators to continue to provide public transport services for essential trips. In doing so, we continued to follow the guidance from the Department of Health in order to mitigate risk of infection to both staff and passengers.
Public transport is preparing to play its part in Phase One of the Roadmap for Reopening Society and Business on Monday 18 May, and will continue to operate the current revised timetables to match demand for public transport while maintaining social distancing, as remote working is to continue for all workers or businesses that can currently do so.
The NTA and its subsidised public transport operators (Dublin Bus, Bus Éireann, Iarnród Éireann, Luas, Local Link, and Go-Ahead Ireland) has already implemented social distancing measures and these measures will be kept in place. Any anticipated increase in passenger numbers will be closely monitored and capacity will be added where required.
Anne Graham, NTA Chief Executive said: “As social distancing measures significantly reduce bus, train, and tram capacity, I am encouraging those who need to travel on public transport to only do so if their journey is essential and to consider cycling or walking to their destination as an alternative where feasible. If public transport is their only option, they should follow public health guidance when travelling.”
In line with government recommendations as part of Phase One, the NTA advises all passengers to wear face coverings when on busy public transportation.
Enhanced daily cleaning will continue to be undertaken, which includes the daily sanitising of frequently-touched surfaces on board all vehicles and at depots and termini points throughout the country. In addition, almost all buses, trains, and trams are now receiving at least one additional cycle of cleaning during the day.
The NTA continues to plan with our transport operators for the provision of enhanced public transport services in line with the Government Roadmap for Reopening Society and Business and will publish our proposals shortly.
The NTA continues to follow public health advice as it is issued. Any public transport actions will be guided by the National Public Health Emergency Team and the advice of the Chief Medical Officer.