Tuesday, 7 July 2020

Questions (126)

Cormac Devlin

Question:

126. Deputy Cormac Devlin asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the measures he is proposing to ensure persons using public transport wear face coverings and masks; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [14393/20]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Transport)

Following the commencement of Phase 3 of the Roadmap for Reopening Society and Business on 29 June 2020, changes to the existing public transport social distancing restrictions were agreed, allowing a move from 2 metres social distancing to utilising 50% of the passenger-carrying capacity of fleet. This will help to underpin public transport services during these unprecedented times, with a view to safeguarding public transport capacity in Phases 3 and 4 of the Roadmap for Re-opening Society and Business.

Alongside this change, it has also been decided that the wearing of a face covering when using public transport is mandatory, with the exception of those who cannot do so for health reasons or due to young age. The legal framework to back up the mandatory use of face coverings on public transport is currently being prepared and we expect to have new Health Regulations in the coming days.

Deputies will be familiar with the extensive public information campaign currently underway to advise the public about the use of face coverings for the benefit of themselves and those around them. Guidance on the safe use of face coverings is available on the gov.ie website.

Compliance by passengers with the public health advice in relation to face coverings is being carefully monitored and, given the current situation and the public health advice, I would strongly encourage all passengers to wear a face covering while on public transport.