Orbus and COVID-19

Bus Talk column - 26 March 2020

With this week’s announcement and the increase to Alert Level 4 for the COVID-19 response, we want to thank you for your patience while we navigate this unprecedented time and adapt our Orbus service. As always, the safety of passengers and drivers are our priority.

From today, the Orbus services in both Dunedin and Queenstown will be running on a reduced timetable. The bus service will continue and be available for those working in essential services, for travel due to medical reasons, and for those without other means to get to the supermarket.

Full details of timetable changes are available on our website www.orc.govt.nz under the ‘Public Transport’ tab at the top of the page.

Otago has an older ticketing system and adding credit to GoCards requires bus drivers to handle cash because the current system doesn’t have a facility for online top-ups. To stop interaction between passengers and drivers, we have eliminated the need for cash and for your GoCard, so until further notice the service is now free of charge.

    

What you need to know

  • All passengers should only enter and exit buses through the rear door
  • Practice social distancing where possible:
    • Stay at least one metre away from other passengers on the bus
    • Leave the seat on the bus next to you empty if you can
    • Leave the seat behind the driver free
  • Please don’t ride the bus if you are unwell
  • Cover your mouth with your elbow when coughing or sneezing
  • Avoid touching your face
  • Wash and dry your hands before and after your journey
  • All buses are disinfected daily and where possible, between services
  • Drivers have been provided sanitiser and a mask; please don’t be alarmed if your driver is wearing a face mask

We ask that you continue to be patient and kind to our drivers and bus operators.

ORC is paying close attention to advice on public transport as the COVID-19 situation develops. We will keep you updated on the usual channels – our website www.orc.govt.nz/public-transport/covid-19, Facebook page and via contacting us at transport@orc.govt.nz or calling 0800 ORBUSDN (672 8736).

You can also follow our Facebook page, ‘Orbus Dunedin’, for regular updates.

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