The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) released a new report that shows there is no direct correlation between using public transportation and the transmission of COVID-19. The study, which analyzed public transit use in multiple U.S. and international cities this summer, also found that there will be long-term negative health consequences if large numbers of people switch from public transit to private cars.
This report is based on a comprehensive review of United States and global research regarding COVID-19 transmission and public transit, interviews with public health experts, and new analysis of various data sources. This report details the following findings:
- No direct correlation has been found between use of urban public transit and transmission of COVID-19.
- There will be long-term health consequences if people in large numbers switch from public transit to private cars.
- An analysis of public transit ridership in multiple cities over the past three months shows no correlation with the rise or fall of local COVID-19 cases.
- Mask wearing has been shown to be effective at reducing person-to-person transmission.
- There are several possible explanations for the lack of correlation between the increase in public transit ridership and increasing COVID-19 cases.
- It appears that what you do at the end of a trip affects the probability of contracting the virus far more than the mode of travel.
Download the full report, “Public Transit and the COVID-19 Pandemic: Global Research and Best Practices”
Cleanliness and Sanitization Practices
As a proactive response to the spread of COVID-19, RTD added to its already robust cleanliness and sanitization practices. RTD’s current vehicle and facility cleanliness and sanitization practices are above general industry standards as follows:
- Nightly cleaning of every bus with an antibacterial and antimicrobial disinfectant solution.
- Use of maximum strength antibacterial and antimicrobial disinfectant cleaning solutions at all RTD transit hubs.
As additional precautions, RTD now uses a sanitizing fog solution on vehicles as a part of its scheduled preventative maintenance program and increase its disinfecting practices to include all fare vending machines.