Hamilton

HSR buses now free to ride, passengers must enter from rear doors due to coronavirus

This follows the city's recent moves to reduce weekday bus service to a Saturday schedule as ridership has been cut in half as people avoid one another.

The seats directly behind drivers must remain vacant and passengers must stay behind the yellow line

The HSR will be free to ride as COVID-19 enters the phase of community spread. (Adam Carter/CBC)

In another response to promote social distancing and tend for the city's most vulnerable, HSR buses will be free to ride, but passengers must enter through the rear doors.

The city of Hamilton said in a release it is implementing the measures starting Thursday, March 19. 

"Customers are asked to stay behind the yellow line at the front of the bus, and to keep the seat(s) behind the operator free at all times," reads the release.

"HSR continues to be a safe method of travel, this is a precautionary measure in an effort to increase social distancing, particularly for bus operators."

Paul Johnson, the director of the city's emergency operations centre, said on Tuesday the yellow line behind bus drivers has also been moved farther back.

This follows the city's recent moves to reduce weekday bus service to a Saturday schedule as ridership has been cut in half as people avoid one another.

As of Wednesday at noon, there are 15 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Hamilton and one of them is a result of community spread.

Community spread is considered the next stage in the spread of the disease as it loses that direct connection to people who had travelled to infected areas. It makes the social distancing measures being recommended all the more necessary.

About the Author

Bobby Hristova

Reporter/Editor

Bobby Hristova is a reporter/editor with CBC Hamilton. Email: bobby.hristova@cbc.ca