As Chicago continues to respond to the Coronavirus outbreak, public transit remains an essential service. We are committed to providing the highest level of service possible, and normal bus and train schedules remain in place.
We continue to work closely with the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) and Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), and continue to monitor information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization.
Importantly, providing the safest, cleanest environment possible for our customers and employees remains our top priority. We thank the hardworking men and women of the CTA for continuing to provide these essential transit services.
Learn more about some of the measures we are taking to address this health concern:
Supporting our employees
CTA plays a vital role during this health crisis, and as such we are placing the highest priority on keeping everyone healthy and safe. This includes the hardworking men and women driving our buses, operating our trains, staffing our stations, maintaining vehicles and infrastructure, cleaning and other vital tasks at our many facilities. Every day, these men and women are making sure Chicagoans can use the vital transit services they need.
Every decision we have made with regards to our workplace environment during this time has been in consultation with the CDPH, and in lockstep with their guidelines on proper cleaning practices and personal protective equipment (PPE).
Among the things we’re doing to keep the members of the CTA family healthy and safe (click arrow to learn more):
Prior to COVID-19, we already had one of the most rigorous cleaning regimens of any U.S. transit agency – and now, we’re doing even more. Our rail cars, buses, stations and work facilities are cleaned and disinfected throughout each day, and receive deeper cleanings nightly and on a regular basis. All our cleaning practices and products have been reviewed and approved by CDPH.
All employees have been provided gloves and hand sanitizer, and we’ve also distributed extensive information to all work locations about COVID-19 and the best practices recommended by city, state and national health experts. We will continue to follow CDC and CDPH guidance regarding proper PPE.
For most CTA employees, the casual contact they have—like the few seconds when a customer pays their fare, or the few moments assisting someone at a fare gate–doesn’t put them at greater risk of infection. Rail operators control trains from an entirely enclosed cab at the front of the train, and rail station attendants are conducting their work out of enclosed kiosks. Bus operators are only assigned vehicles equipped with driver shields, which create a barrier between them and boarding customers.
We continue to promote social distancing on trains and buses, with signs on every vehicle and on digital screens throughout the rail system, as well on social media. We’ve also been promoting social distancing at all work facilities, making adjustments to common areas to provide and environment where proper social distancing can occur, and placing posters to remind everyone how important it is to stay separated.
We stand fully behind the hardworking men and women of CTA, who continue to perform with professionalism and care, and we join all Chicagoans in appreciation of their efforts.
As we continue to address this ongoing situation, the health of our workers will remain our No. 1 priority.
We are continuing our already rigorous cleaning schedule for our buses and trains, which includes both daily cleanings and routine deep cleans.
Each vehicle receives multiple cleanings throughout the day, which includes disinfecting surfaces (seats, handrails, stanchions, etc.) and more-concentrated spot cleanings as needed.
In addition to the daily cleanings, all vehicles undergo deep cleans, which entails intensive cleanings of the interior surfaces and exterior periodically.
Each of our rail stations are cleaned throughout the day, which includes disinfecting surfaces such as handles, handrails, Ventra vending machines, faregates and turnstiles, etc.
Tips for riders
We all play a role in helping keep CTA healthy and safe. As a customer, there are many things you can do to help us reach that goal. CTA is a vast system that operates 24/7, and we all play a part in reducing the spread of COVID-19. We are all in this together.
The following are some tips we strongly recommend customers follow:
- Wash your hands prior to and after traveling
- Use hand sanitizer and limit touching surfaces
- Ride for ESSENTIAL trips only (e.g. work, trip to grocery store/pharmacy, etc.)
- Keep your distance; CDC recommends a minimum of 6 feet
- Avoid sitting in a vacant seat directly next to another rider
- Keep at least one row of seats between you and other riders
- Spread out! If your bus or rail car appears full, consider:
- On a train, move to another rail car
- Wait for the next bus or train
And as a reminder, health authorities recommend the following at all times:
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH)
- Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH)
- World Health Organization (WHO)
- MEDIA: B-roll of CTA system cleaning (video)
- Daily station cleaning (00:00-02:16)
- Bus deep clean (02:17-04:11)
- Bus daily clean (04:12-05:19)
- Rail car deep clean (05:19-06:55)