Bus service reduced to Saturday schedule

All bus routes on the Sunshine Coast will see reduced service levels starting Monday, April 6, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The change means all routes will run on the Saturday schedule seven days a week.

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A rider’s guide will not be available, said a BC Transit announcement.

“The service changes also take into account having sufficient service to allow for physical distancing while travelling on public transit in BC Transit communities,” the announcement added.

Since March 20, bus fares stopped being collected and passengers have been required to use the rear door of the bus “to enhance social distancing.” Sanitization procedures were also put into effect. 

When discussing budget amendments at a Sunshine Coast Regional District committee meeting last week, infrastructure services manager Remko Rosenboom said they had been considering reducing transit service to Sunday levels but had decided against it at that time.

“You would actually get more people on the bus and given that we’re only doing rear-door loading at the moment, it would significantly reduce the opportunity for passengers to adhere to social distancing practices, because the buses would get more full than we want them to be,” Rosenboom said. If ridership decreased further, he added, they would consider a schedule adjustment.

Another consideration, said Sechelt director Darnelda Siegers, was health-care workers, since Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) had already indicated that changes to transportation could impact them. “Even if our numbers go down, I think we need to ensure that we’re in touch with VCH and the various health authorities and care providers to ensure we are providing the transportation they need to get back and forth to their jobs.”

A preview schedule can be found at BCTransit.com

COVID-19-related changes can be found at: BCTransit.com/covid19

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