The easing of some coronavirus restrictions has presented fresh challenges for light rail operators, the latest meeting of a UKTram working group has heard.
While networks have reported a gradual increase in patronage, operators have seen shifts in the time of peak demand. Meanwhile, an increase in road traffic as more people return to work and leisure activities has resulted in more disruption due to congestion and associated incidents and delays.
Ahead of this week’s announcement of the lifting of remaining restrictions, a recent meeting of the UKTram Operations Group also heard that, in some areas, compliance with rules on the wearing of face coverings has declined slightly, and it was more difficult to manage social distancing.
Steve Duckering, Operations Manager at UKTram, explained: “By running full timetables to increase capacity, and putting a range of other measures in place, operators are doing all they can to maintain safe social distancing.
“However, as the economy opened up, it was inevitable that there would be unexpected peaks in the numbers of people using a particular service. This has led to isolated incidents where customers have been requested to use their discretion and show patience by waiting for the next service to arrive.”
During the meeting, which was held online, representatives from networks across the country also reported successful recruitment campaigns for a wide range of roles that were launched as operators returned to a full service.