• A range of measures – including enhanced cleaning regimes at stations – introduced to help keep passengers safe from the virus while travelling by rail
  • Network Rail has been deploying almost two and a half times the number of station staff than before the pandemic, and more than twice as many additional staff to help customers compared with the 2012 London Olympics
  • Passengers should continue to follow public health guidance – wear a face covering if you are not exempt, travel at quieter times and maintain a distance from others wherever possible

Network Rail is reassuring passengers today that they can use the rail network with confidence owing to a range of measures that have been introduced to keep them safe.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, Network Rail has been working hard to keep its stations and facilities in the most hygienic and best possible condition for passengers, station users and staff. In addition to ‘business as usual’ cleaning regimes, including regular deep cleans, additional deep cleans have been carried out in toilet areas, while sanitiser and anti-viral treatment have been used on common touch-point areas such as doors and handrails.

The number of station staff has also increased to provide information to passengers, encourage the use of face coverings and help people travel safely. Other measures include:

  • Vending machines installed at Network Rail’s managed stations – 20 of the biggest stations in the country, including Waterloo, King’s Cross and Birmingham New Street – so passengers can buy face coverings, gloves, anti-bacterial wet wipes and hand sanitiser
  • 21-day cycle of Zoono – an anti-viral treatment that protects surfaces for up to 30 days – to all touch point and hygiene areas, and additional touch-point cleaning no less than four-hourly on a continuous cycle, guarding against risk of contamination
  • One-way systems and floor stickers installed to help passengers navigate stations in a controlled way
  • 250 hand sanitiser stations introduced at managed stations
  • Queuing systems to limit the number of people in and out of toilets where necessary
  • Cubicles, urinals, sinks and dryers marked as out of use, and new signage installed, to maintain social distancing
  • Seating in stations and waiting rooms altered to support social distancing

Andrew Haines, Network Rail chief executive, said: “I would like to thank passengers for following Government advice over the last few months. By only travelling if absolutely necessary, you have helped us to operate a reliable service for critical workers – such as doctors, nurses, carers and supermarket workers – who have needed to travel, and to keep the country connected by moving goods such as food and medicine by rail freight.

“Now, as lockdown continues to ease and the nation turns towards recovering from this pandemic, I look forward to welcoming more people back to the railway. We have significantly stepped up cleaning regimes and made sure there are more staff on hand to help with information so you can travel safely.”

Passengers are reminded that they should take the following steps to ensure they are keeping themselves and others safe when using the railway:

  • Wear a face covering for the duration of your journey unless you are exempt – for example young children, people with visible or hidden disabilities and those with breathing difficulties
  • Maintain a distance from others wherever possible
  • Avoid peak times and travel at quieter periods if you can
  • Maintain good hand hygiene