COVID-19 Contingency Plans
Following the Governments move to a new stage in its Coronavirus plan, a number of bus and coach operators are expected to start the process of relicensing and readying mothballed vehicles for a return to service.
Whilst service frequencies are set to be increased, the Government message remains to only use public transport if absolutely necessary. Social Distancing on board buses will continue to apply and operators will be reducing maximum carrying capacities.
A Notice to Staff issued by Stagecoach quotes the following temporary carrying capacities for vehicles:
Double Deck - 20
Single Deck - 11
Midibus (Dart/E200) -10
Minibus (Solo) – 7
In London fares will again be charged from tomorrow, whilst several Stagecoach Companies are temporarily operating an exact fare system for cash fares with no change given. Any excess money from fares is being donated to charities.
Volvo B5TL/MCVs 802 and 803 are the first of the COVID-19 mothballed vehicles to be relicensed here.
Stagecoach South Wales
A further repaint here into Stagecoach 'Local' livery is Enviro 200 36842 at Blackwood.
Temporary COVID-19 arrangements saw Enviro 200s 36258/59/60, 36386/87/93/94 and 37239/46 moved from Cheltenham to Stroud.
Withdrawn and now for disposal here is Dart SLF 34665 from Swindon, which has been replaced with 35114 transferred from North Bristol. Former Stagecoach Cumbria & North Lancashire Dart SLF 35193 is now allocated to Stroud having lost its Lakes green livery for the old version of the Stagecoach corporate (Beachball) livery.
Following on from the repainting of Enviro 300 27719, 27553/55 and 27517 have all now received the new Stagecoach ‘Local’ livery. 27517 was completed yesterday.
The company has confirmed to us that it is currently removing route branding from the X46/X47 Scania/Enviro 400s along with Enviro 200s and Enviro 300s at Northampton. Following route revisions some of the branding was dated and no longer applicable to the routes.
Stagecoach Cumbria & North Lancashire
The new Sellafield contract start date has been deferred but several of the new minibus vehicles were on site at West Cumbria yesterday including:
Mercedes-Benz 516 Sprinter 44038 with a further two now also delivered along with Mercedes-Benz EVM Trend examples 44048/49/50/51/52/53. Also confirmed at West Cumbria are 11.8 metre Enviro 200MMCs 26001-05 from Stagecoach East Scotland along with Optare Versas 25265/67 with 25266 due to transfer to West Cumbria next week. 26001-03 are expected to re-enter service from June 1st 2020.
We understand that Enviro 200 36416 is back in Manchester for engineering work . On its return it will join 36417/19 at Kendal. 36422 will initially be allocated to Carlisle.