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SamTrans to increase service, resume fare collection Aug. 16

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SamTrans is set to increase service and resume fare collection and front-door boarding starting Sunday, Aug. 16.

Protective barriers will allow customers to pay their fare while avoiding contact with bus operators, according to the transit agency. SamTrans said it will have extra vehicles available to ensure social distancing can occur onboard.

The transit agency has been operating at a reduced service schedule with suspended fare collection due to the COVID-19 pandemic shelter-in-place orders.

“The new schedule restores more frequent service on 14 routes, including ECR120130 and 292, to accommodate increased ridership and allow for physical distancing onboard,” according to SamTrans. “The service plan also makes adjustments to routes primarily serving schools in response to their plans for distance learning. SamTrans will continue coordinating with schools to determine potential future restoration of school-day only service for high-need populations when students resume in-person learning.”

Updated timetables are available online, and the transit agency anticipates further service changes as it monitors the COVID-19 situation.

“The drive behind this new schedule is to help support the Bay Area’s economic recovery,” said SamTrans General Manager Jim Hartnett. “In addition to expanding access to essential jobs and services for those who need it most, the service plan allows us to prepare for and respond to further shifts in ridership.”