04 Jun 2020

South Shore Line outlines health and safety protocol for return to normal service


South Shore News

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, South Shore Line (SSL) has invested a tremendous amount of time and resources into taking enhanced precautions and implementing new procedures for the health and safety of passengers, as well as train personnel. As Chicago begins to open and more commuters and leisure riders return to the train, the SSL intends to further the safety measures being taken through its Sanitized for Rider Safety program, a comprehensive cleaning and health and safety program.

In addition, the SSL continues to require its riders to wear masks at stations and on cars, practice social distancing when possible, and take advantage of sanitization stations in each car. For those riders who choose not to wear a mask, we are offering a “mask-optional” car.

Sanitized for Rider Safety and Recommended Passenger Health and Safety Guidelines

Sanitized for Rider Safety is SSL’s new comprehensive cleaning program, and SSL invites riders to look for the Sanitized for Rider Safety seal in the stations and train cars within the next several weeks. SSL sanitization procedures include disinfecting seats, windows, crash pads, handrails, door handles, headrests, and grab handles. Each train car is mopped with a stringent disinfectant and fogged with disinfectant using state-of-the-art equipment.

SSL recommends the following guidelines for passengers:    

  • Utilize hand sanitization stations available in each train car
  • Refrain from congregating in train vestibules
  • Avoid touching your mouth, nose, or eyes while on train
  • Wash hands frequently, and follow CDC recommendations for handwashing
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or the inside of your elbow when you cough or sneeze
  • Respect the personal space of all passengers to the best of your ability
  • Wear a mask or face covering while in stations and while on train (mask-optional train car available for those who are unable to or choose not to wear a mask. Crew will direct passengers to designated train car.)

For more information, please visit https://www.mysouthshoreline.com/commuters/sanitized-for-rider-safety

“SSL has always made passenger safety the highest priority of our service. Recent times have caused us to put significant emphasis on one aspect of our service delivery involving the sanitization of our stations and equipment, which we have greatly enhanced. We are also taking added precautions that are designed to limit the spread of COVID-19 or other viruses. We want our riders to know that we have invested in new cleaning and sanitizing equipment and practices, along with hiring additional staff in preparation of returning to our regular schedule, and the return of many of our riders to our system,” said Michael Noland, President of South Shore Line. “We want to see every rider wearing masks, as well as following our recommended health and safety guidelines.” 

Return to Regular Service Schedule and Service Alerts

SSL will resume regular service on Monday, June 8, 2020. Updated schedules can be found on SSL’s website at mysouthshoreline.com or on the South Shore mobile app. In returning to regular service, SSL is committed to providing riders with clear, timely, and accurate information on the status of train service, including delays or service disruptions. To more efficiently deliver these updates to passengers, SSL has begun offering service alerts in the form of SMS/wireless text messages. Riders wishing to receive service alerts via SMS/Wireless can sign up at https://public.govdelivery.com/accounts/INTRANNICTD/subscriber/new. For further instructions on how to signup, visit: https://www.mysouthshoreline.com/news/item/290-ssl-to-begin-offering-service-alerts-in-the-form-of-sms-wireless-text-messages-effective-immediately .

In addition to SMS/Wireless text messages, SSL will continue to provide important service updates via email notifications, SSL website homepage ticker, mobile app, station announcements, and social media.

Bikes on Trains

SSL’s Bikes on Trains program will be reinstated on Monday, June 8, 2020, with the return to regular service. Bikes on Trains has expanded to eighteen (18) total weekday trains in 2020 and bike cars are available through October. Bike icons can be found on the SSL timetable next to the specific train times that run cars equipped with bike-racks. Bike-rack equipped train cars are also clearly marked with a bike symbol prominently located on the windows of the car. For more information on bike-friendly train schedules and Bikes on Trains requirements, please visit https://www.mysouthshoreline.com/plan-your-trip/bikes-on-trains .