Toronto-Montreal Megabus passengers potentially exposed to TB, health officials warn

Megabus passengers who traveled between Toronto and Montreal on August 20 and 23 , 2015 may have been exposed to tuberculosis, public health officials warn. AP Photo/Seth Wenig

TORONTO – Public health agencies are attempting to reach riders who may have come into contact with contagious tuberculosis on buses in the Montreal-Toronto corridor last summer.

On Wednesday, Quebec’s Ministry of Health and Social Services said it recently learned that a Megabus passenger who made two trips along the busy route in August 2015 was ill with the airborne disease, although she was not aware at the time.

Federal and provincial health ministries are working with Megabus parent company Coach Canada to contact riders who might have been affected, although they say such passenger information isn’t complete.

Authorities are recommending anyone who rode the following routes to undergo a tuberculosis screening, even if they are showing no symptoms:

  • Megabus #771 , Thurs., August 20, 2015. Departed Montreal at 4:30 p.m., stopped in Kingston, Ont. at 7:25 p.m., arrived in Toronto at 10:15 p.m.
  • Megabus #718, Sun. August 23. Departed Toronto 1:30 p.m., stopped in Kingston, Ont. 4:10 p.m., arrived in Montreal at 7:15 p.m.

Persons infected with TB can show no symptoms, but can still spread the disease by coughing or other means. In some people, the disease can lie dormant for years before symptoms emerge and, if left untreated, could be fatal.

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Passengers who rode the affected routes can contact 8-1-1 for residents of Quebec, or the telephone line for persons resident outside Quebec by calling the following toll free number: 1844 -817 to 0200.

Public health officials will then conduct a screening and recommend treatment if necessary.

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