FACE masks became compulsory on public transport yesterday but not everyone was taking notice — despite the threat of £100 fines.
Thousands of extra staff were laid on to ensure travellers were obeying the new rule requiring them wear a face covering on England’s trains, buses, tubes, coaches, trams, planes and ferries.
And although most complied, some still hadn’t got the message.
Workers at Transport for London gave out masks to around one in ten Tube and bus passengers.
A spokesman said early morning Tube journeys were up 17 per cent on the previous Monday as non-essential shops opened their doors for the first time in nearly three months and workers returned to offices.
‘The growth is in the later hours of the morning, especially after 9am, so customers are travelling later and avoiding the peak,’ the spokesman said. ‘We’ve seen around 80 to 90 per cent of people wearing masks on the Tube and buses — which is great.’
People with some disabilities and children under the age of 11 are exempt from the new rules, but others face a £100 fine if they are caught without a face covering.
Transport secretary Grant Shapps tweeted out a reminder of the new rules yesterday along with a link to government instructions on how to turn a T-shirt into a mask.
‘This is about the small changes we can take to help control the virus, which is why I urge everyone using transport to wear a face covering, to help keep us all safer,’ he said.
Passengers were also required to wear masks as EasyJet resumed its first UK flights since grounding its entire fleet in March.
And train operator Avanti West Coast marked the introduction of the new rules by wrapping the noses of two of its Pendolinos with face coverings.