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GRTC: Expect delays due to employee quarantine

GRTC is cautioning riders to expect significant service delays this week until COVID-19 test results return for employees in quarantine from contact tracing efforts.

On Sunday, there were several routes with missed service. Customers making essential trips on GRTC are advised to secure alternate transportation to reach their destinations. The Customer Service Call Center is open until 5PM to assist customers with bus tracking (804-358-4782).
To date, 31 GRTC employees and contractors have tested positive for COVID-19, with 24 recoveries, and one death. 
There are six GRTC employees currently on leave with COVID-19, five of whom are recovering at home. Contact tracing is underway for the most recent case, but the previous five cases were suspected to have been contracted off-duty from other family members or non-work community activities, according to GRTC.
As positive cases are identified, GRTC proactively notifies, quarantines, and tests for any possible contact. GRTC notes this process is in accordance with guidance provided by the Virginia Department of Health.

“We continue to proactively quarantine any possible COVID-contacts for the safety of our staff and customers, but this means employees are removed from their duties and causes service delays to our customers,” said GRTC Chief Executive Officer Julie Timm. “I know how frustrating it is to wait for a bus that never comes, and I ask our customers for understanding during this difficult time of rising cases in the community.

“We have not had any outbreaks yet among GRTC staff and we believe that is a testament to our aggressive COVID-safety protocols. The health and safety of our staff is critical to preserving reliable transit service, and this is why I believe it is essential for our transportation frontline staff to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in the first round, not the second round as tentatively planned.”

GRTC reports that it will continue to host periodic on-site, free COVID-19 testing events for staff, including the next event on Dec. 10.

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