SunLine Transit Agency will begin collecting fares for bus trips starting May 2, after nearly a year of nixing the practice in order to reduce contact between riders and drivers due to the coronavirus pandemic.
In offering free rides, the transit agency has been allowing riders to enter the back of the bus, eliminating their contact with the driver and farebox. Agency officials said new safeguards will be in place when fare collection resumes, aimed at stopping the spread of COVID-19.
“Our team has implemented several measures to keep riders and operators safe as we gear up to resume fare collections on May 2,” said Lauren Skiver, SunLine’s CEO and general manager. “In addition to daily disinfecting procedures and safety partitions, we are asking riders to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 by staying home when feeling unwell and taking advantage of our hand sanitizers on every bus, and using Token Transit and the MyStop Mobile app.”
The Token Transit application allows riders to pay fares on their phone. MyStop Mobile is a trip planning tool with bus route schedules and other information, which could eliminate the need for riders from having to come into contact with bus drivers to beckon route information.
For riders who must use the farebox to pay for rides, SunLine has installed a thick slab of safety glass to separate drivers from passengers.
For more information about the agency’s virus-related safety protocols, go to www.sunline.org/covid.