Preston Bus "to operate as normal" during coronavirus outbreak

Preston Bus said it will continue to operate, but it is asking passengers to consider using contactless payment when boarding
Preston Bus said it will continue to operate, but it is asking passengers to consider using contactless payment when boarding

A Preston bus company has said it will continue to operate as normal during the early stages of the coronavirus outbreak.

Preston Bus, which operates services across the city, South Ribble and the Ribble Valley, said it will continue to run its fleet on a full schedule.

It said it will be "monitoring the situation daily", but will provide a full service until it is advised differently by the Government.

The company said "extensive cleaning regimes" are in place on all buses and it is asking passengers to consider using contactless payment to help drivers avoid handling cash.

A spokesman for Preston Bus said: "The health and safety of our staff and passengers is of upmost importance and following the ongoing developments around the COVID-19 virus we have been implementing measures in line with government policy.

"Public transport provides a vital role in keeping the country running and ensuring critical sector workers in the health and emergency services can fulfil their roles.

"The situation with Coronavirus is fast-evolving, but for now the current Government advice is that people are able to continue to use public transport as they go about their lives.

"Bus and coach operators have extensive cleaning regimes that maintain high levels of hygiene for passengers to protect the health and well-being of their customers and employees.

"These regimes are carefully monitored and reviewed, and operators are introducing enhancements as necessary.

"If passengers have concerns about cash handling in the current environment, we have facilities to pay electronically either via contactless payment on-bus or m-tickets on your mobile phone.

"At the present time, our services will continue to operate as normal.

"We will be monitoring the situation daily and as the situation evolves, Rotala Plc and all of its Bus and Coach Operations will continue to engage with government and follow the guidance from public health bodies and local authorities."