Bus and rail services in Leeds will continue to operate as normal for the time being, but individuals are being advised not to travel if they can avoid it, writes Richard Beecham.
The West Yorkshire Combined Authority (WYCA), which oversees transport and large infrastructure projects in the region, said it is working with operators to ensure the public transport network is available for ‘essential travel’ in the coming weeks, in spite of concerns over the coronavirus pandemic.
It follows Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s advice this week that individuals should avoid workplaces, crowded areas and travelling unless absolutely necessary.
A statement from WYCA read:
“While many people will choose not to travel, key workers will still need to get to work.
“The Combined Authority is co-ordinating the public transport response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic to ensure services are as resilient as possible, especially for key workers.
“The government has recommended that people should work from home where possible but the combined authority is working to ensure the public transport network continues to be available for those who need travel.”
It added that, while a full public transport service was currently available, it is possible that the consequences of the virus could lead to changes to services at short notice.
School bus services will operate where schools remain open.
Coun Kim Groves, chair of the WYCA transport committee, said:
“In the light of the latest government advice, we are working with bus and rail operators to make sure the public transport system is as resilient as possible in the coming weeks to ensure key workers can continue to get to work.
“We are also making sure the bus stations and transport interchanges we operate in West Yorkshire comply with the last public health advice through additional cleaning procedures.
“While there is no disruption to services related to coronavirus currently, we are mindful that could change in the coming days and weeks and so it is even more important that passengers check services before they travel.”
Passengers are being urged to check wymetro.com and @MetroTravelNews on Twitter before they travel.