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Serious accidents on London transport increase as Covid worried passengers shun holding safety rails

Accidents on London’s underground and buses have increased because passengers are too frightened to hold onto handrails.

Travellers fear they could catch Covid-19 from the supports.

People are not holding on “due to a perception they are not clean”.


There were 12 serious injuries on the Tube and 23 on buses between April and July.

The figures from Transport for London (TfL) were greater than any other quarter through 2020-21.

Elderly people are most at risk.

Accidents on escalators have also increased as more and more drunken revellers have returned to having nights out.

Andy Lord, London Underground MD said:

“The two biggest risks we have are falls on escalators caused by people who don’t hold the handrail.

“There is an issue with the perception that the handrail is not clean because of the pandemic.

“The other bigger issue is actually intoxication.

“We have seen a significant spike as the various stages of lockdown have been reduced, with particular spikes initially on Thursday and Friday evenings and then weekends.”

Researchers at Imperial College London found little trace of the coronavirus on shared surfaces in stations they tested.

TfL is installing UV light devices on handrails at stations, which kills the virus on the surface.

Mr Lord continued:

“We’re spending a huge amount of time and money and resources cleaning the handrails, as well as the UV cleaners which are being steadily rolled out across the entire network.

“We are looking at what further communications we can do to raise awareness of that for our customers.”





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