The independent London newspaper

If masks are mandatory on public transport, enforce the rule

31 July, 2020

‘There were at least 18 people on the bus, although the notice said maximum 14 – six not wearing any masks’

• I HAVE just taken my first trip by bus since lockdown, having spent the intervening months avoiding crowds because of serious health issues and my age.

I took the 236; there were at least 18 people on the bus, although the notice said maximum 14. Six of these were not wearing any masks or wearing them under their chins so they could speak on their phones or to each other.

When I remonstrated with one lady she said, “I don’t have the virus” and carried on talking loudly. All the mask-less passengers were seated towards the back of the bus, giving maximum scope for their spittle to spread.

What choice do I have? I can go back to staying at home and only going out to places within walking distance. I can speak out and risk verbal abuse or worse. Or I can throw in the towel and buy a car – an option not open to everyone.

If the government is making masks mandatory on public transport it must provide the means for enforcement. And, no, this is not the job of Transport for London staff or the police.

Traffic wardens monitor illegal parking as a separate agency. As far as I know illegal parking never killed anyone.

Avenell Road, N5


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