The TTC is adding at least 47 extra buses to busy morning rush hour routes
In an effort to reduce crowding and ensure the safety of passengers and employees throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the TTC has announced that they'll be adding a minimum of 47 extra buses to some of the busiest routes during the morning rush hour.
TTC spokesperson Stuart Green tweeted about the news Wednesday morning, and he listed all the routes that are receiving additional buses.
"In order to reduce customer volume and allow for better physical distancing on buses, the #TTC will provide a minimum of 47 extra buses for early AM and AM peak service on higher volume routes," Green wrote.
"Please consider delaying non-essential trips until after 8 a.m. if possible."
3/4— TTCStuart (@TTCStuart) April 1, 2020
52 Lawrence West - 2 extra buses (Airport trips)
96 Wilson - 4 extra buses
102 Markham Rd - 4 extra buses
117 Alness-Chesswood - 2 extra buses
119 Torbarrie - 2 extra buses
123 Sherway - 2 extra buses
165 Weston Rd North - 3 extra buses
Green also said the TTC has 14 supervisors assigned to key positions throughout the system, who are in charge of directing additional buses to where they are needed most on high ridership routes.
"This is redeployed service and an increase in operator availability," he wrote. "This is a work in progress and we will monitor."
One Twitter user asked Green if the TTC is also planning to set maximum passenger loads for vehicles as other transit systems in other cities have done, and whether fare inspectors could be used to enforce this considering they're no longer issuing fare evasion tickets.
"We are not setting caps at this time as it could potentially open operators up to confrontations with customers. We don't have enough TFIs to do what you suggest and reassigning them would mean taking them out of important support roles in stations," Green replied.
"Our approach is to put more buses out and spread the riders out while keeping operators out of conflicts."
ALL BUS ROUTES: We're doing our best to provide as much service as our resources allow. Many routes aren't able to strictly adhere to schedules. Service is allocated with priority to the busiest routes and to ensure all areas of the city have reasonable access to public transit.— TTC Service Alerts (@TTCnotices) April 1, 2020
Yesterday, the TTC announced that they'd identified nine bus routes that are particularly crowded before 7 a.m. on weekdays, and they asked riders to consider travelling after 7:30 a.m. if possible to encourage physical distancing.
They also announced several days ago that all bus access would be limited to rear doors to protect drivers from contracting COVID-19 from passengers, and that fare boxes for cash, TTC tickets and tokens would no longer be in use. Paper transfers are also not being issued for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The TTC has also pledged not to deny service to passengers without Presto cards.
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