APTA Publishes Report on COVID-19 and Public Transportation Safety

WSP USA led development of a transit operations guidebook to safeguard riders and agency employees from COVID-19.

WSP USA partnered with the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health to develop a transit industry guidebook, The COVID-19 Pandemic – Public Transportation Responds: Safeguarding Riders and Employees.

The guide is written to provide senior public transit operations leaders with strategies and tactical solutions that can help protect riders and agency employees from COVID-19, as well as help with future pandemic preparedness.

"It has been inspiring to see the public and private sectors, along with academia and our federal leaders, come together so quickly to help our industry and our communities in a time of need,” said John Gasparine, assistant vice president for the Northeast transit and rail market at WSP. “Public transit is an essential service, and we hope this guide will be an important element of the transit industry’s response and recovery from the pandemic."

The APTA guidebook is based on input from public health, medical and transit experts, as well as best practices shared by agencies nationally to provide transit and rail agencies of all sizes with a range of practical COVID-19 risk management options that are implementable with today’s resources.

“Despite the contagious nature of COVID-19, public transportation can be safely used if all those involved – the transit agency, staff, and riders – take the necessary steps and precautions,” according to the study. “These best practices may also inform future pandemic emergency preparation strategies.”

“This is just the first step on the transit industry’s road to recovery,” Gasparine added. “In the months to come, our industry will need to build robust plans for restoring confidence in the safe use of transit, and ultimately restore ridership. In the following years, our industry will undergo a significant evolution as resiliency planning permeates every element of how we plan, design, construct, operate and maintain of our transit systems.”

Click here to download the full report.

[To subscribe to Insights, contact the editorial staff at insights@wsp.com.]


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