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BOSTON — With many workers staying home or heeding advice to avoid crowds, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority is implementing changes to service.
Starting Tuesday, the agency will adjust the frequency of service on subway and bus lines. Commuter Rail schedules will be reduced and ferries will be canceled.
“While some of these changes are inconvenient, they maintain a responsible balance between protecting the health and safety of the MBTA workforce and our customers, and our goal of continuing to run safe and reliable service without major disruptions,” MBTA general manager Steve Poftak said in a statement.
The Commuter Rail Reduced Service Schedule is available at www.MBTA.com/coronavirus and will proactively be handed out at major stations, such as North Station, Back Bay Station and South Station, on March 16 and available at ticket offices upon request. The Reduced Service Schedule applies to all lines and the modifications, while limited, support periods of peak travel while providing off-peak options throughout the day.
“We will continue to disinfect key passenger areas and touchpoints on Commuter Rail trains every 24 hours, with many of our trains receiving this deeper clean every 12 hours,” said Keolis CEO and General Manager David Scorey in a statement. “We’re working closely with the MBTA and monitoring closely guidance from state and federal public health officials to ensure we’re staying up-to-date during this very fluid situation. While we are continuing to provide service at a reduced level, it is critical for people to follow recent state protocols, such as social distancing and very limited gatherings.”
Find the MBTA Commuter Rail schedule here.
As further precaution to limit the spread of coronavirus, the MBTA and Keolis are encouraging passengers to purchase tickets at ticket offices, vending machines or the M-Ticket app to limit the use of cash whenever possible.
Keolis and the MBTA will provide updates on service to passengers via Twitter at @MBTA_CR, MBTA.com, T-Alerts, station signage and onboard announcements.
Earlier this month, the MBTA started cleaning frequently touched surfaces, like handrails and fare gates, in stations every four hours. Vehicles were to be cleaned and disinfected daily.
Earlier in the day, Poftak released a memo to employees.
“Employees should continue planning for their families well being, especially now with the closure of all public school districts,” Poftak wrote. “But it’s in the spirit of public service that I ask essential personnel, those of you that operate and keep our system running everyday, to continue doing the job you do best, for all of our riders. For personnel whose responsibilities include supporting our frontline employees, your supervisor will be discussing with you recent interim policy changes relative to maintaining continuity, remote service as well as possible teleworking.”
According to the MBTA, the modifications include:
Blue Line: Trains every 9 to 13 minutes
Orange Line: Trains every 9 to 11 minutes
Red Line between Alewife and JFK/UMass: Trains every 7 minutes
Red Line Ashmont and Braintree Branches: Trains every 14 minutes
Green Line: Trolleys every 7 to 13 minutes on the branches; more frequent service on the trunk
Most Bus routes: Saturday Schedule
Express Bus Routes 325, 326, 351, 352, 354, 501Regular Weekday Schedules
Ferry: Service Cancelled
Commuter Rail: Reduced Service – Schedules to be posted on MBTA.com
Mattapan Line: Trolleys every 12 to 26 minutes
The RIDE: Full Service