COMMENTARY: MATS should install protective shields around drivers or suspend service

The Associated Press and other news outlets are reporting that a Public Bus driver out of Detroit just died of COVID-19.  Jason Hargrove, a 50 year old city bus driver passed away Wednesday from COVID-19 two weeks after posting a Facebook live complaining about a lady on the bus coughing and not covering her mouth.

This begs the question, is Public Transportation essential under the current pandemic that exist? Is it really possible to practice social distancing on a public bus?

Public Transportation systems need to install protective shields around drivers immediately. These shields exist, in fact a Muskegon-based transportation company has had them installed in some of its fleet for four years. This is the only way to protect drivers, but it still leaves the public at risk on a bus.

These are difficult times and certainly everyone is trying to adjust. However, if its mandated that we practice social distancing being at least 6 feet apart. We really need to consider suspending service until this virus dies down.

I understand the inconvenience this will cause those without transportation, however the public and local government must decide what’s really important.




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