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Free ride over on MBTA buses, above-ground trolleys

New trolley shielding

New shielding on the Green Line

The MBTA announced today that it's returning to front-door boarding on buses and on trolleys at street-level stations, including on the Mattapan Line, on Monday - in a move it says will also mean more seats available for passengers.

Protective barriers have been installed to support physical distancing between operators and passengers, allowing front-door boarding to resume and providing more space for customers than the previous temporary barriers.

Passengers will still be required to wear facial coverings, the T says.

To avoid overcrowding on buses, operators also have the discretion to bypass a stop if the operator determines that the bus has reached its safe capacity. If a customer with a disability is able to be identified while waiting at a stop to be bypassed, the bus operator alerts the Control Center, will notify that individual that the stop is being passed due to crowding, and will alert the customer to the approximate time of the next available bus that can accommodate them.

Passengers had been boarding buses and street-level trolleys at the rear as a Covid-19 measure, with numerous seats near the front of the bus or trolley blocked off to protect the driver.

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Comments

Huh? How would the MBTA either identify or notify a client waiting for the bus?

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"You look disabled, ma'am. Are you pregnant?"

No, I am not pregnant.

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They will be the ones at the stop carrying the signs that say "I normally wouldn't be here, but the paratransit drivers are on strike!"

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But the headways on many bus lines are 30 minutes or more. If you get skipped by a bus that the driver thinks is "too full" then you're waiting a long time. And who knows if the next bus will be "too full" as well?

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You are required to wear a mask while riding the MBTA. If you don't wear a mask you will still be able to ride . Can anyone explain why private business establishments are required to follow the rules but public authorities don't have to follow the rules?

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What about those of us that are medically disabled and have to get to the hospital but we don't *look* sick? I'm in that category and have to be there for infusions.

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So will they also be going back to a normal weekday schedule also?
Also, before I wasn't onboard (no pun intended) with the whole free bus idea. However, after seeing how efficiently the buses load without people who insist on paying their fare with nickels and dimes, I've change my mind.

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... the drivers from the exposure to passengers, the reason for the rear door entry?

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They installed clear plastic shields like the one in the photo

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This sounds like what you're asking about: "Protective barriers have been installed to support physical distancing between operators and passengers."

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People are likely to keep boarding at the rear doors (at busy stops or major mid-trip terminals like Nubian), and feign ignorance to avoid paying their fare. Bus drivers aren't going to call those people out either, given the frequency of physical assaults by fare dodgers.

And before someone mentions that people in Brookline are also not paying for the Green Line by boarding through the rear, please save your time: the C line is being bussed until August 1.

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How on earth will they alert the customer? Does the T bother to read the shit they put out?

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Which means drivers are now more vulnerable to spitters (who may be Covid positive) and kickers and punchers and screamers who can't get on free. Please protect our drivers!!

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If you only need a bus pass and haven't already bought one for July it's too late to do so.

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Two one week passes will do, and will cost you less.

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Yes, barely. There's no 7-day bus pass, just bus+subway. So you have to pay $45 for two 7-day passes, plus individual fares for the last 3 days in July. By comparison, a monthly bus pass is $55.

They should really allow buying monthly passes later in the month. Especially for Commuter Rail, where there is no weekly pass.

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If you only take the bus to commute to work, the cost of 20 bus trips (round-trip for ten days) on a CharlieCard would be $34, vs. $45 for two one-week passes.

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They really should offer weekly bus passes.

The people who really get screwed by this are express bus and commuter rail riders. If you're not riding for a calendar month, there's no pass option.

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