TransLink steps up sanitation efforts in light of COVID-19 concerns (VIDEO)

’We are taking additional steps to ensure a high standard of cleanliness is maintained in order to reduce any potential risk of viral spread’

TransLink says it is upping cleaning and disinfection across Metro Vancouver’s transit system as concern over the spread of COVID-19 continues.

In addition to cleaning and disinfecting all stations, bus loops and vehicles daily, the transit authority is also arming all Coast Mountain Bus Company vehicles and buses with sanitization kits, which include gloves and sanitizing wipes, said TransLink spokesperson Ben Murphy.

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“TransLink is following the lead of health officials when it comes to our response to COVID-19,” Murphy told the Courier in an email. “…we are taking additional steps to ensure a high standard of cleanliness is maintained in order to reduce any potential risk of viral spread. “

Those steps include:

  • All stations and bus loops are cleaned at least once per day, including a disinfectant wipe down of stair and escalator handrails, elevator buttons, door handles, fare gates, Compass vending machines, garbage handles, benches, seats, emergency cabinets and emergency phones.
  • All SkyTrain cars are cleaned overnight and all poles, seats, ceilings, handles, windows, sills and other surfaces within the cars are wiped down with a disinfectant.
  • The entire fleet of buses and SeaBuses are cleaned daily and sprayed with a disinfectant on a weekly basis.
  • HandyDART vehicles are cleaned and disinfected daily.
  • WestCoast Express trains are cleaned and disinfected every evening when they come out of service.

“TransLink is closely monitoring the situation and we remain in contact with regional health authorities and other transit agencies in order to determine best practices and ensure our response is appropriate,” Murphy said, adding that the transit authority is constantly reviewing its cleaning procedures.

One adjustment that was made in the past few days was transitioning the HandyDART vehicles to a daily disinfection schedule. Previously, that was occurring bi-weekly, in addition to daily cleaning.

Service to and from Vancouver International Airport on the Canada Line is continuing as usual.

“We take the lead of health officials and have not been directed to make any operational changes at this time,” Murphy said. “Passengers travelling to or from the airport should follow the advice of health officials to ensure strong personal hygiene standards are maintained.”

As of Thursday, the number of people in B.C. confirmed cases of COVID-19 stood at 53. There has so far been one death from the virus in the province.

@JessicaEKerr

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