NLC Coronavirus (COVID-19) advice for Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensees

NORTH LINCOLNSHIRE COUNCIL

WASTE, FLEET AND PUBLIC PROTECTION

 

Coronavirus (COVID-19) advice for Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensees

 

Following the advice of NHS England and Public Health England, North Lincolnshire Council is providing the following guidance to hackney carriage (HCV) and private hire vehicle (PHV) drivers in the North Lincolnshire area to help prevent potential transmission of Coronavirus should it become more prevalent in the country.

 

Drivers are encouraged to:

 

  • Always carry tissues and use them to catch coughs and sneezes
  • Dispose of used tissues in the bin as soon as possible
  • Wash hands with soap and water, or use sanitiser gel, to kill germs
  • Clean surfaces regularly with sanitising wipes or spray to get rid of germs

 

The information can be viewed in the following YouTube video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BEJHHuT9_ig&feature=youtu.be

 

We advise all licensees, including HCV and PHV drivers, to follow these simple and sensible steps at all times and particularly in the wake of the outbreak of Coronavirus.

 

We would also encourage licensees to take sensible and routine precautionary measures such a cleaning surfaces regularly with sanitising wipes or spray to get rid of germs. As ever, drivers should consider regularly cleaning card payment devices. Licensees who share a hackney carriage or private hire vehicle should consider regularly cleaning the steering wheel and instruments.

 

Public Health England is the lead agency and is providing regularly updated information for the public on the outbreak of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in China, including the current situation in the UK and information about the virus and its symptoms.

 

You can access the most up-to-date information in the link below. 

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public

 

If you are worried about the Coronavirus (COVID-19), have a cough, temperature or shortness of breath and have been in physical contact with someone from an affected area then the NHS advises you to:

 

  • Stay indoors and avoid contact with other people as you would with the flu
  • Call NHS 111

 

We would expect all private hire operators (PHO) to fully cooperate with any enquiries they may receive from Public Health England or any other relevant agencies. Whilst the above advice is current at the time of writing, please regularly check the Public Health England website and Government / NHS websites for updated information:

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

The Department for Transport has also issued updated guidance following the Governments relaxation of restrictions.

The DfT’s updated HCV and PHV guidance follows the Government’s publication of transport guidance for operators and passengers in England.

The DfT said:

“The guide for operators will help organisations, agencies and others (such as self-employed transport providers) understand how to provide safer workplaces and services for themselves, their workers and passengers across all modes of private and public transport. Each transport provider will need to translate the principles and examples in this guidance into specific actions."

To support this, the DfT’s Buses and Taxis Division has written to hackney carriage and private hire vehicle providers and licensing authorities with Q&A for the HCV/PHV sector, containing links to the guidance and answers to common questions.

Deputy Director, Local Transport COVID-19 Response, Department for Transport

 

TAXIS AND PRIVATE HIRE VEHICLE Q&A

 

What guidance has been published for the taxi and private hire vehicle sector?

 

The Government has published transport guidance on the safe provision of transport services during the COVID-19 pandemic. There are separate guidance documents for transport providers and for passengers. Both guidance documents cover all modes.

 

The guidance sets out government recommendations on who should be traveling and under what circumstances, and how social distancing rules should be interpreted. It also includes information about cleaning practices.

 

• Guidance for passengers

• Guidance for operators

• Guidance on clinically extremely vulnerable

• Guidance for households with a possible coronavirus infection

 

Should taxi and private hire vehicle drivers or passengers wear PPE such as a mask?

 

There are some circumstances when wearing a face covering may be marginally beneficial as a precautionary measure. The evidence suggests that wearing a face covering does not protect you, but it may protect others if you are infected but have not yet developed symptoms. This is most relevant for short periods indoors in crowded areas.

 

We are advising passengers if they can, wear a face covering in an enclosed space where social distancing isn’t possible, and where you will come into contact with people you do not normally meet - such as when travelling in a taxi or private hire vehicle.

 

A face covering is not the same as the surgical masks or respirators used by healthcare and other workers as part of personal protective equipment. These should continue to be reserved for those who need them to protect against risks in their workplace, such as health and care workers, and those in industrial settings, like those exposed to dust hazards.

 

Wearing a face covering is optional and is not required by the law. If you choose to wear one, it is important to use face coverings properly and wash your hands before putting them on and taking them off. Use the guidance on face coverings to understand how to wear and make a face coverings.

Other measures such as changing habits, social distancing, screens, cleaning and hygiene are also suggested in the guidance.