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‘How can you socially distance here?’: Belsize Park man reveals pictures of packed Archway bus despite pandemic

PUBLISHED: 13:39 13 October 2020 | UPDATED: 13:39 13 October 2020

The packed 134 bus. Picture: Submitted

The packed 134 bus. Picture: Submitted

Archant

A Belsize Park man has called for better social distancing on public transport by revealing pictures of commuters jam-packed into a London bus during the pandemic.

The packed 134 bus. Picture: SubmittedThe packed 134 bus. Picture: Submitted

The resident, who did not wish to be named, took the photos on a 134 bus between Camden Town and Archway at about 5.35pm on September 27.

He was on his way to a music concert at Lauderdale House when disruption caused by an incident on the Northern Line at Archway Station meant he had to take the bus.

READ MORE: Person in hospital after incident at Archway Underground

“I was keen to get to Archway to get to the concert, but looking around the bus, that was when I became alarmed,” he told this newspaper. “How are you meant to socially distance here?

“We stopped at two stops and he (the driver) let more people on.”

The passenger, who is in his 60s and uses public transport to get around, tested positive for Covid-19 a week later and self-isolated accordingly.

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“I went to the concert and could have picked it up there, or I was in Tesco’s a couple of days later and a guy got close - I had to tell him to move back - so I don’t know (where he picked up the virus).

“It was only a couple of instances, but it happens all the time. I do often see people on the underground who don’t have masks and I get very annoyed when I see it.

“I always make an effort to get into an empty carriage if possible.”

The 134 is a Metroline bus. A spokesperson from the company said: “The safety of our employees and passengers has been our priority throughout the pandemic.

“All our buses clearly state capacity limits on the entry doors and there are social distancing markers in place on seats. We continue to work with our drivers during this incredibly difficult time, asking them to remind passengers to observe the Covid-19 capacity limits that are in place to help keep everyone safe.”

Tom Cunnington, Transport for London (TfL) head of bus business development, said: “The safety of our customers and drivers is the most important thing to us and this is why we have capacity limits, led by the government’s latest social distancing guidelines, in place on our buses.”

He said Metroline staff have been reminded of capacity limits and their importance in curbing the spread of Covid-19.


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