'Don't ditch face coverings' after 'Freedom Day' - says Brighton and Hove bus company
A bus company in Brighton and Hove is asking passengers to continue wearing face coverings on its buses, if they can.
From today (Monday, July 19), people are no longer legally required to wear masks on public transport or at shops.
Brighton & Hove and Metrobus Managing Director Martin Harris said that while face coverings would no longer be compulsory on public transport, people were strongly encouraged to wear one, unless exempt.
“The government, our local authority and public health teams are advising that people continue to wear face coverings in enclosed spaces," he said.
"We fully support this, and our messaging on face coverings on buses remains in place.
“We highly recommend that passengers who can wear face coverings continue to wear them, unless they cannot.
"This is the same recommendation for all enclosed spaces such as shops.
"As the final details are being worked through, I would ask all passengers to continue to act responsibly to help keep each other safe.”
Martin said bus passengers would notice ‘very little difference’ when they travelled from 19 July.
“We will continue to maintain measures such as thoroughly cleaning our buses and extra touch point cleaning, providing hand sanitiser on board and keeping windows open to refresh the air.
"Capacity numbers will revert to pre-pandemic levels and almost all of the measures we have put in place throughout the pandemic and the guidance we have applied will remain in place.”
Martin said that buses were an essential to the recovery of the local economy and part of life gradually returning to normal.
“We are really pleased to welcome people back on to our buses as seating and standing restrictions on buses are removed.
"All the other health and safety measures we have put in place during the pandemic will stay, because our priority is - and will always be - the safety of our customers and colleagues.”
Martin said the bus company would continue to listen to the advice of local public health teams, working with our local authority partners, and consulting trade union representatives, to deliver safe and sustainable travel options for the communities it served.
What’s changing on buses after 19 July?
Passengers can stand inside buses
Bus capacities back to pre-Covid levels
Passengers may now sit anywhere on the bus
What’s not changing?
Customers expected to wear face coverings, unless exempt
Extra bus cleaning with hospital grade products
Additional touch point cleaning on buses through the day
Air filters remove 99.9% of virus and bacteria from on-board air intake systems
Windows kept permanently open to aid ventilation
Hand sanitiser on buses
Bus company apps & website help travellers check how busy their bus is
No change given on the bus
Sealed drivers’ cabs