The Tyne and Wear Metro is undergoing enhanced cleaning with a special disinfectant to help prevent the spread of coronavirus, giving confidence to customers who need to use the service as lockdown begins to ease.
Nexus, the public body which owns and manages Metro, said it was using a new, longer-lasting cleaning agent that would provide anti-viral protection - ensuring that the network meets the Government’s Covid-secure standard.
The disinfectant is being applied in Metro carriages, including driver’s cabs and passenger saloons, using a special spray. It kills germs and keeps critical surfaces and touchpoints cleaner for longer.
Metro’s fleet of 90 trains is being treated in preparation for higher passenger numbers as more shops and schools start to re-open as lockdown measures are eased.
Metro Operations Director, Chris Carson, said: “This enhanced disinfectant gives greater confidence to our customers who need to use the service as lockdown measures start to lift.
“The new cleaning fluid is more effective because it lasts longer, reducing the risk of coronavirus spreading. It helps us to ensure that Metro meets a Covid-secure standard.
“We are expecting to see some uplift in passenger numbers as more shops start to re-open, allowing more people to return to work, and Metro is there for people who really do need to use it.
“We are making sure that our stations and trains are cleaned to the highest standard, and that there is clear information on how to socially distance as you travel.
“People are still advised to take Metro only where they need to, such as for work, if you cannot do so from home, and where you can’t walk, cycle or use a car. Customers should also follow Government advice and wear a face covering when travelling on public transport.”
Cleaning on the Metro system had already been stepped up before the lockdown started. That regime involves the daily use of a hospital-grade cleaning fluid on high touch surfaces, including handrails, poles, buttons and ticket machines.
Each Metro carriage is being treated with new disinfectant at the Metro depot at South Gosforth in Newcastle.
The new disinfectant that is being used on Metro is called Zoono Z-71, which is a Microbe Shield Surface Sanitiser.