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Metlink is enforcing its policy regarding public health guidelines that face masks are to remain mandatory on their services under COVID-19 Alert Level 1.
Face masks will be mandatory on all bus, train and ferry services starting at midnight on Thursday, February 18.
Typically if the virus happens to spread in the community following three Community Cases including a further two identified in South Auckland within the last two weeks, it could create another lockdown if it is not contained fully.
The health guidance enforcement will be decided on Monday by Cabinet whether any risks may pose the idea of keeping face masks mandatory.
Metlink General Manager Scott Gallacher says that the Government has made it clear for people to wear face masks while on public transport.
“We encourage passengers to follow this advice before getting on our buses, trains and ferries. These measures will help keep passengers safe across the whole network,” says Mr Gallacher.
Students using school bus services do not have to wear face coverings, except for those who are 12 years old or older.
Metlink staff must wear face coverings unless it is unsafe for medical reasons or impairing vision.
“Our staff and passengers did a great job at alert level 2 with over 99% of people on the region’s network wearing face coverings. I want to thank them for their ongoing patience and commitment to their fellow passengers,” says Mr Gallacher.
“The safety of passengers and our Metlink team is paramount, so please continue to follow all Government instructions. Metlink is doing all it can to place your safety at the forefront of everything we do, and we continue to carry out enhanced cleaning measures across trains, buses and ferries.”
“However, if you are sick, please do not travel on public transport. Stay safe and be kind.”
A face mask exemption from the Government is available if someone has a disability or health condition. They can get an exemption card by calling Healthline on 0800 358 5453. The person will be given a printable card or virtual one that can be shown on a mobile device.
Image: SUPPLIED/RNP New Zealand
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