The MTA will set up plexiglass and plastic curtain obstacles to shield bus drivers — in advance of a prepared August return to entrance-doorway bus boarding and fare collection, officers said Tuesday
Officials hope to roll out the $1,500-per-bus plexiglass dividers on 4,200 area buses commencing in July or August, with completion anticipated someday in the fall, buses chief Craig Cipriano reported in the course of a demo at the Michael J. Quill Bus Depot in Manhattan on Tuesday.
An additional 600 area buses and 1,000 convey buses will get plastic shower curtain-like vinyl separation by the close of August, at a price tag of $300 to $500 per bus, Cipriano said.
“This is a near-phrase alternative. We’re also performing on other answers that are… very long expression,” he instructed reporters. “One resolution we’re partaking our bus suppliers on is the possible to have a fully-enclosed bus operator compartment.”
“But which is a new structure of a bus. That wouldn’t come about for some time.”
New York City neighborhood buses have been fare-free and backdoor-only due to the fact March 23 in buy to shield bus motorists from contracting the coronavirus. Given that March, far more than 10,000 MTA staff members have identified as out sick at 1 level, and 132 personnel have died from the virus.
Transit officials have previously teased strategies to superior shield bus operators from travellers as bus ridership has rebounded a lot quicker than subway ridership, to about 52 percent pre-pandemic stages.
But an precise date has not been set for the resumption of entrance door provider and fare selection. Cipriano deflected when requested no matter if travellers will be authorized to enter via the entrance door on buses with no the enhanced dividers.
“We’re on a pretty intense, accelerated roll-out,” he claimed. “We’ll do every little thing we can in regards to providing right safety for our operators.”
TWU Regional 100 President Tony Utano warned transit officials need to think twice before resuming front door boarding on buses that don’t have the excess protection.
“We’re not likely to allow for our bus operators to pull out a bus devoid of a barrier of defense whilst the pandemic is likely on,” Utano reported.