COVID-19: Amtrak implements measures to limit spread

17 March 2020 (Last Updated March 17th, 2020 15:37)

US-based passenger railway service Amtrak has taken steps to limit the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) on its trains and has reduced some of its services.

COVID-19: Amtrak implements measures to limit spread
Amtrak has implemented different steps to limit the spread of COVID-19 and has also cut down some of its services. Credit: Amtrak.

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US-based passenger railway service Amtrak has taken steps to limit the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) on its trains and has reduced some of its services.

Amtrak has stated that it is monitoring the spread of the coronavirus and following the directives given by public health experts.

Amtrak has waived the fees for changing train tickets until 30 April. It added that passengers travelling to Canada will have to declare previous travel and undergo medical screening as directed by US Customs and Border Protection (CPB).

Amtrak added that it has increased the frequency of cleaning to multiple times in a day and the use of disinfectants to clean handrails, doorknobs, handles and surfaces.

The quantity of disinfectant wipes and sanitisers has also been increased for customers and employees.

The rail operator has suspended the services on the Northeast Corridor and the Keystone Service, Winter Park Express Cascades temporarily.

In addition, Amtrak Hartford Line and Valley Flyer, New York State Service and Amtrak Downeaster will operate at a reduced service.

In a separate development, UK rail operator Northern has issued a health advisory for passengers to safeguard themselves during the pandemic.

It has offered a complete refund if any passenger opts not to travel while a change in dates will also be allowed.

Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) has also announced changes in schedules for its rail services.

The move was announced based on the guidelines issued by health authorities and due to reduced ridership.

VIA Rail Canada also announced plans to suspend some of its services to limit the spread.

The New York City Subway in the US witnessed a steep decrease in daily ridership amid the Covid-19 outbreak. The total subway ridership dropped by 18.5% on 11 March, compared with the same day a year ago.