ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority riders will no longer have to pay beginning Thursday. The change is in response to coronavirus concerns.
PSTA officials say temporarily going fare-free will reduce crowding near the fare box and limit exposure to passengers and bus drivers.
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PSTA would now like riders to get on and off the bus using the back door, if they are able to. Those who need to to use the front door can still do so.
ABC Action News recently reported on the new cleaning measures PSTA is taking to help reduce the spread of the virus. Cleaning crews have tripled their daily efforts to disinfect all transit vehicles, terminals and facilities. Crews are especially paying attention to areas that are touched often, like doors, windows and seats.
As of right now, PSTA says it will provide service on current routes until advised.
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The Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority is operating as usual. Officials say they are closely watching ridership, the number of people working and closures of businesses along routes. Customers will be told if there are any changes to service.
In the meantime, HART is asking riders to practice social distancing while on board.