Officers of the COVID-19 Monitoring Unit pulled 18 public service vehicles (PSVs) off the road Wednesday after operators were found to be in breach of the COVID-19 protocols related to public transportation.
Director of the Unit, Ronald Chapman, said that the officers inspected between 130 and 150 PSVs and Transport Board buses. The specific breach cited in the case of the 18 PSVs, he explained, was that either passengers, conductors or drivers were not wearing masks.
He said the operators were ordered to cease business for the remainder of the day, and he warned that similar action would be taken in coming days if people operating and using public transport continued to flout the protocols.
“The officers from the Monitoring Unit will be back out tomorrow (Thursday) and every day after that to make sure that the protocols are being adhered to.
“The protocol of mask wearing on public service vehicles and buses is aimed at protecting the health of the public. People are sitting in close proximity to one another on these vehicles and therefore there can be no physical distancing. By wearing the mask, you are protecting yourselves and the others around you,” Chapman said.
And he made it clear that the masks must be worn, not only by the driver and conductor, but by every passenger travelling on the buses.
“We all have a responsibility to make sure that we prevent the transmission of COVID-19 in this country. The protocols are clear, and the job of the Unit is to make sure they are observed by everyone. We urge the public to cooperate with us as we seek to carry out this mandate.”