Message from the COO: Protecting you from COVID-19

31 Mar 2020

As the Coronavirus pandemic continues to change the environment we are working in, I want to assure you, both the safety and wellbeing of our people and that of our passengers remains our first priority.

We continue to adapt and put additional measures in place to support us all during this very difficult time.

Since last week, we have begun cleaning and sanitizing trams at termini during peak periods right across the network and have started auditing the cleaning of all trams to ensure it is being completed to a standard we are comfortable with.

A trial of physical barriers is currently underway on selected Kew and Camberwell trams and has received positive feedback to date. We expect this to be rolled out to the rest of the depots this week.

We have also confirmed the required process for ordering and distributing PPE and Cleaning Products - all employees are encouraged to flag their needs with their Line Manager and Local Coordinator.

There are a number of interventions that you can do to reduce the risk of infection and slow the spread of COVID-19.

We all have a role to play, and can support this by following the Big Three:

  1. Wash your hands regularly
  2. Practice social distancing and
  3. Stay at home if you’re feeling unwell.

These are particularly important in reducing the spike of infections and protecting our elderly and those with chronic diseases or pre-existing medical conditions.

We are also finalising social distancing guidelines and hope to share these with our people soon.

The guidelines focus on separating our workforce where we can. From this week the Operations Centre have been split into two - with half working from Tram Hub and the other half out of Carlton Control Centre. We will also begin to stagger shifts reducing any overlap between shifts.

The guidelines will also outline how we can limit the exposure across the business; and provide advice on what we can all do to help reduce the spread.

As many of you would’ve already seen, the Prime Minister advised that people aged over 70, those with a chronic illness aged over 60, and Indigenous Australians over the age of 50 should stay at home as much as practical. For those impacted by this announcement, I encourage you to please speak to your manager about what this means for you and how we can support you.

We remain committed to keeping you up to date with the latest information and providing you with answers to your questions.

We will continue to do whatever we can to get through this, together.

If you need some support, please reach out.

Stay safe everyone and take care.

Robert Tattton-Jones
COO, Yarra Trams