Timetable changes will come into force across South Yorkshire’s bus and rail networks, as public transport bosses respond to national COVID-19 lockdown restrictions.
Passengers using public transport for essential journeys are urged to check before they travel at https://www.travelsouthyorkshire.com/ ahead of the changes this weekend (23/24 January).
It follows a call from the Department for Transport for operators to reduce their services in response to falling demand. The changes aim to maintain network coverage in South Yorkshire, with reduced service frequencies on routes.
Bus services will run to reduced timetables, with some additional journeys operating in the early mornings and evenings. Specific arrangements are being made for school services, to match travel needs and demand. It follows a reduction to Supertram and Rail services earlier this week.
“The changes are necessary in response to the significant drop in passengers we are seeing across South Yorkshire’s public transport network since the new lockdown, when UK government instructed everyone to stay at home, if they can, to avoid spreading the virus”, says South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive’s (SYPTE’s) Director of Customer Services, Tim Taylor. “We expect the new timetables to be in place as a minimum until the current national lockdown ends.
“The changes will keep South Yorkshire’s public transport network running for essential journeys while balancing demand for services, ensuring that critical routes used by key workers, school buses for vulnerable and key worker children, and people accessing medical appointments are maintained, wherever possible.”
Details of revised bus timetables, school services, and the latest updates on tram and rail services, will be available at travelsouthyorkshire.com/servicechanges. Details of school services will be available at https://www.travelsouthyorkshire.com/en-gb/journeyplanning/school-buses.
Passengers can also call Traveline on 01709 515151 and Travel South Yorkshire social media channels will be updated with the latest information.
Tim added: “SYPTE is working closely with the region’s bus, tram and rail companies as Coronavirus restrictions continue. We want to reassure those that need to travel – for work or other legally permitted reasons - that, collectively, we are doing all we can to keep our customers safe on their necessary journeys.
“We’re reminding passengers to wash their hands before and after using public transport, to wear a face covering and keep a safe distance. Do not travel if you have coronavirus symptoms, you are self-isolating or you are living with someone who has symptoms.”