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Travel officials issue safety reminder for riders as state, regions begin reopening


NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — As we continue Phase Two of reopening, the state is out with a safety reminder for mass transit riders.

Union Station is not quite the ghost town it was a month or two ago. Connecticut is opening up and New York City is now in Phase One. That means more people are heading to their jobs there.

One thing has not changed, though. If you ride mass transit, you’ve got to wear a mask. That goes for Metro North, Shoreline East and Hartford line trains, as well as all state and regional buses.

For those buses, they continue to board through the rear door, so passengers don’t get too close to the driver. Bus companies are also working on installing plexiglass dividers on all buses so there’s a physical barrier between the driver and the passenger section. Buses had been seeing about half the normal number of passengers, but that number has been going up.

Train ridership had been down more than 90%, but that too is going back up. For all those commuters, the message is simple: wear a mask, keep as much social distance as you can, and stay home if you feel sick.

As for drivers, fewer cars have meant traffic can go faster. That’s nice, up to a point. High-speed crashes have gone up, so the state is asking drivers to obey speed limits and move over for work crews. They are using the decrease in traffic volume to do much-needed repairs.

With the nicer weather, more people are just out walking. The state has a reminder for them, too. When you get to the corner and want to push the button for the crosswalk, use your elbow. You’re going to see stickers reminding people to do that, and in some case new, bigger buttons that are easier to bump with your elbow.

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