Published on : Friday, May 8, 2020
As part of Amtrak’s ongoing commitment to protect customers and front-line employees in response to the coronavirus pandemic, beginning on May 11 Amtrak is requiring that all customers in stations, on trains and thruway buses wear facial coverings.
“The safety of Amtrak’s customers and employees is our top priority and requiring a facial covering is one more way we can protect everyone,” Amtrak President and CEO Bill Flynn said. “Amtrak continues to operate as an essential service for those who must travel during this public health crisis. Our services will be even more critical as our nation recovers.”
This new policy will require customers wear a facial covering over their nose and mouth while in stations, on trains and thruway buses. Facial coverings can be removed when customers are eating in designated areas, in their private rooms, or seated alone or with a travel companion in their own pair of seats. Small children who are not able to maintain a facial covering are exempt from this requirement.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends the use of simple cloth facial coverings or masks to slow the spread of the virus and prevent transmission. Customers must supply their own facial covering. Customers can go to CDC.gov for detailed instructions on how to make their own facial covering.
Amtrak continues to take extra steps to sanitize stations and trains. Additional measures include the following:
Limiting bookings: To help maintain CDC recommendations for physical distancing onboard trains, we have temporarily reduced Coach and Business class sales to 50% capacity.
Going cashless: As an added measure to ensure the health and safety of our customers and employees, we are temporarily accepting only cashless payments in stations and on trains.
Promoting physical distancing: Signage has been displayed at several of our busiest staffed stations to indicate safe distances in high customer traffic areas such as waiting rooms, in front ticket offices, at the base/top of escalators, lounge entrances, etc. In addition, clear protective barriers have been retrofitted at staffed stations where there are no current glass barriers.
Updating food and beverage service: We are temporarily offering Flexible Dining service in the dining or lounge car on all long distance routes (except Auto Train) and encouraging all Sleeping Car customers to select optional room service for their meals. In addition, we are limiting seating in dining and café areas.
Amtrak continues to evaluate current practices and pilot new opportunities to support personal safety.