73% to wear face covering on buses

Only 73% of passengers say they can wear a face covering on buses, according to a recent poll.

Bus Users conducted the survey on Twitter from 15 to 19 June, taking into account nearly 1,500 responses. It was launched to coincide with face coverings becoming mandatory on public transport in England.

In all, 73% of respondents said they would be wearing a face covering, with 9.7% saying they are medically exempt and 17.3% saying they do not have a face covering. Bus Users notes many operators have taken steps to introduce exemption cards and others have instructed their staff and drivers to automatically accept a passenger’s claim that they are exempt without challenging them or preventing them from travelling. Bus Users has been contacted by a number of people concerned that other passengers may challenge them for not wearing a face covering. Some have said they will not travel by bus as a result.

It was found 84% of people were aware of safety measures put in place by operators. Over 65% were willing to use the bus and around half said their views on using public transport had not changed during the crisis. The survey reported nearly 70% of people were more concerned about other people breaking the rules.

Dawn Badminton-Capps, Bus Users Director for England, said: “Operators have clearly done a great deal to communicate with their passengers and despite some concerns, the vast majority (65.8%) of people said they were willing to return to bus travel.

“What’s needed now is clarity and consistency around the rules on bus travel and how they are enforced. The bus will be a vital tool in our economic and social recovery and we need everyone to feel confident and safe about travelling if we are to ensure services are viable and sustainable for the future.”

The full report is available here.

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