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Sixth London bus driver dies of Covid-19

The sixth London bus driver to die after contracting Covid-19 has passed away.

He was a regular driver on route 394.

Bus drivers, like many others, have been working with little to no protection despite the serious nature of the virus becoming apparent back in January.

Some nation’s such as Sweden have sealed off front door boarding and permitted rear door boarding. Staff on the DLR often now sit in closed off sections of trains.

15 Comments

  1. Chris L

    Every London bus has a screen on the cab door and there is no cash handling. Better than anywhere else.

    • Ste

      The aerodynamics of the flat front on a bus cause the air inside the bus to pull forward through the cab when the cab window is opened. And of course the sheer number of people crammed into them.

  2. Graham

    Firstly my thoughts and prayers are with the bus drivers family friends and colleagues at this very sad and difficult time. Rest in peace.

    I do agree with Chris L bus drivers are far more safer and protected than their passengers.With screens protecting them and no money passing hands. It is even possible he picked up Covid-19 from in side his cab from anorther bus driver or why out in the wider community.

    With passenger usage down this is also greatly helping to protect bus drivers during the coronavirus crisis.

    We do know that sadly London’s buses are not the cleanest at the best of times and many drive around filth during the day. Each bus needs to be properly disinfected before and at the end of every shift. Including poles floors etc.

  3. Chris L

    Buses are undergoing heavy cleaning now with strong disinfectants.

    2 of those who died were controllers not drivers.

  4. CDT

    My thoughts are the drivers family, friends and colleagues at this terrible time.

    Agreed with both of the above. I think the disinfecting of buses and all public transport should be carried out 365 days of the year as part of standard cleaning procedures due to the amout of passengers that normally use public transport on a daily basis.

    • Simon

      I always wonder whether the oyster card reader spreads the virus. Also wonder the same about the self service tills in the supermarkets. I have a proper ticket thankfully.

  5. Graham

    How very sad. They clearly have coronavirus in their work places. More self isolation must take place along with social distancing.

    My friend works at a bus garage as a cleaner there the buses only get wiped down with a damp cloth and spray I know she is concerned about her own health. I think they need to use much stronger disinfectants the same as used in hospitals and care homes

    You could very well be right Simom. According to leading health experts the coronavirus virus lives on plastic for a long time.

  6. Graham

    Simon i meant

  7. CDT

    TFL did indeed request deep cleaning of public transport in London. However, I think it is the private companies contracted to provide cleaning of London’s buses, tube trains etc tbat are cutting cost and corners with it comes to providing the correct materials required to do the Job.

    Sadly a lot of people are still not taking the coronavirus pandemic seriously enough which means the virus will continue to spread with more people becoming seriously ill or sdaly dying. This also means we wll also remain in lockdown for several months to come,

    Staff need the proper equipment to be able to do their jobs effictively and sfely.

    Also people need to stay at home as per Goverment and World Health Organisation advice and guidance.

    • Chris L

      TfL spec what is required and the companies quote against this.

      In recent weeks additional contracts have been let and bus (and Tube) interiors are being sprayed with a longer lasting sanitiser.

    • Charles Calthrop

      This is true almost everywhere. My cousin is a GP and often told me how the professional companies hired to deep clean his practice would use cheaper bulk-buy cleaners rather than Evans or similar (which are manufactured to clinical standards).

      When he caught a cleaner drying out Blitz kitchen towel to re-use he confronted the owner. The owner claimed it was ‘done all the time’ and they purposely put in low quotes with the intention of recovery of profits through cost-saving measures, such as reusing tissues or rags cheaper scented cleaning products and reducing time on site so that the cleaners can be profitably employed elsewhere.

  8. CDT

    Like with Hospital cleaning the cleaning of public transport should have been kept in house and properly managed.

    Like we need Matrons in hospitals to check cleaning standards are up to scratch we need cleaner inspectors employed by TFL to check London’s public transport systems meet the required standard of cleaning. With more spot checks taking place on a regular basis at bus garages and train depots to double check this is happening.

  9. I have noticed bus drivers are now wearing face masks and the passenger seat opposite the driver’s cab has been taped up to present people sitting there.

  10. CDT

    Excellent hopefully this will help the bus drivers stay a little safer. But bus drvers cabs and the buses themselves need proper deep cleaning using the correct strong disinfectants 365 days of the year and not just during the coronavirus crisis,

  11. Graham

    Agreed. Now TFL and the bus operators themselves responsible for bus services in London need to hold the private cleaning contractors and their management more to account to ensure the cleaning of buses are completed correctly.every time.

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