57 TTC employees have now tested positive for coronavirus

Jun 2 2020, 5:55 pm

A total of 57 TTC employees have now tested positive for COVID-19, with 149 staff in isolation, the transit commission confirmed.

According to the transit union, ATU Local 113, a collector from the Danforth Division has tested positive for the virus, but is recovering.

The staff member’s last shift was on May 25 from 5:45 pm to 2:30 am and they received a positive test result on Thursday, May 28.

Another is a bus operator from the Eglinton Division, whose last shift was on May 29 from 6 pm to 2 am. The member received a positive test result on Saturday.

A bus operator from the Arrow Road Division has also tested positive for the virus with their last shift being May 27 from around 9 pm to 5:45 am. The staff member received their positive test result on May 30.

According to the TTC, the other employees include, a bus operator at Malvern, a collector at Danforth, two Wheel-Trans operators, and a bus operator at Queensway.

The TTC said it has strict protocols in place for when an employee tests positive.

According to the transit commission, once they are notified of a positive diagnosis, they “immediately” engage with Toronto Public Health to investigate and decide on the next steps, including notifying those who may need to take additional actions.

“At every location, we take action to ensure enhanced cleaning measures as recommended by public health officials, such as additional surface cleaning in frequently accessed areas, are undertaken as soon as possible,” the TTC said.

As there is community spread of coronavirus in the city, Toronto Public Health is asking all individuals who have symptoms to self-isolate at home for 14 days from when the symptoms begin and to call Telehealth Ontario, their local public health department or health care provider, and for TTC employees to call the transit system’s Occupational Health and Safety Department.

To date, of the 49 employees to test positive for the virus, 27 employees have recovered and returned to work.

On April 23, the TTC announced temporary layoffs of 1,200 employees as ridership decreased by 85% during the pandemic — even with the cost saving measures, the transit system is expected to lose almost $300 million by Labour Day.

The TTC has also mandated physical distancing on buses by sectioning off seating on vehicles and placing vinyl barriers on buses to protect operators.

The province has also recommended that transit riders wear face coverings when using public transit.

Clarrie FeinsteinClarrie Feinstein

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