STM increases cleaning measures amid coronavirus concerns

Click to play video: 'STM increases cleaning measures amid COVID-19 concerns' STM increases cleaning measures amid COVID-19 concerns
WATCH: STM increases cleaning measures amid COVID-19 concerns – Mar 11, 2020

The Société de transport de Montréal (STM) said it is increasing both the frequency and the rigour with which all public transit surfaces are cleaned amid concerns of the spread of COVID-19 in Montreal.

STM spokesperson Philippe Déry told Global News that metro cars, stations and buses will be getting disinfected more than once a week, but not daily.

On Tuesday, Quebec’s public health ministry announced that a person who tested positive for COVID-19 had traveled by public transport on Feb. 24 and March 6 while potentially contagious. This person used the metro line between Longueuil and Champ-de-Mars stations, passing through Berri-UQAM station. 

“I would like to remind people that taking public transit is safe and the risk of transmission is low,” Déry said.

Commuters told Global News they aren’t too worried about taking the city’s public transit system.

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READ MORE: Quebec health authorities say coronavirus patient used Montreal, Longueuil public transit

“Life goes on, I take it day by day,” said public transit user Carol McKercher.

“[I’m] not really [worried],” said Jennifer Chisholm, adding that she is doing her best to take all precautions to stay healthy.

Yet Chisholm highlighted that regardless of cleaning measures, depending on the time of day you take the metro or bus, commuters have no choice but to be crammed together at rush hours.

“Distance is sometimes hard to keep depending the hour of the day,” Chisholm said.

The STM said if clients feel safer not touching handrails, they can do so, but said it is not yet at the point of advising travellers to do that.

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