OC Transpo conducting mask blitz this week

There will be a two-day mask blitz on OC Transpo this week aimed at reinforcing mask use on the R1 bus that is replacing the LRT.

In a memo, acting general manager of transportation services Michael Morgan says OC Transpo has received feedback from customers regarding mask use on the R1, so special constables will be out in force on Wednesday and Thursday to check for mask use.

The R1 service is in place because the Confederation Line has been offline since Sept. 19 because of a derailment.

Special constables at Blair, Tunney's Pasture and Hurdman stations will have the authority under the city's transit bylaw to issue fines of $260 to customers who are not wearing masks. The can also refuse someone access to the transit system if they do not comply. They will also reinforce how to wear masks properly and can also provide customers with a disposable mask if they do not have their own.

Young children and customers who identify themselves as having a disability or medical condition that prevents them from wearing a mask will not be issued a fine.

Masks have been mandatory on OC Transpo since June 2020 and the city has conducted previous masking blitzes on the transit service.

During the last blitz in February, three people were given fines, 67 people were told to adjust their masks and nine people said they had a medical exemption. No one was denied access to the transit system. Ten people were fined during a mask blitz in October 2020.