Crowded train and bus services are “categorically less safe”

TRANSPORT UNION RMT said today that crowded train, tube and bus services are “categorically less safe” and should not run unless two meter social distancing can be enforced.

The union said unless the government took urgent action to enforce two meter social distancing public transport would become a “turbo charged Covid -19 breeding ground” driving a new wave of infections. The warning has come as the Government begins it's back to work drive this week with a surge in passenger numbers expected on Monday morning.

The union said its advice was in line with general government advice that two meter social distancing should be observed at all times and industry assurances that train services should run with 80% less passengers compared to normal services.  See editors note below.

RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said

“We  have a contradictory and potentially lethal  approach  from government which says  on the one hand when we go outside our homes into open spaces two meter social distancing must be maintained at all times but then on the other hand the government is not lifting a finger to prevent the cramming of passengers into confined spaces on  bus,  train and tube services.

"We have seen the consequences of the governmen‎ts contradictory response in the pictures of rammed out buses and tube carriages. 

 "The union is saying categorically that public transport is less safe if passengers cannot practice two  meter social distancing. The government must take action to enforce it's own public health policies otherwise public transport will become a turbo charged Covid -19 breeding ground driving a second spike of infections.

"With the premature relaxation of the lockdown many people feel they have no choice but to go back to work for purely economic reasons. They do not have the cushion of savings and the option of working from home. This is now clearly a class issue with a dividing line between those who have to work or provide essential services and those able to make the choice to stay at home.”  

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