Air filters installed in Turlock buses in Califronia
The California city of Turlock has installed air filters among a raft of other measures to keep its bus drivers safe and help reduce air pollution in its buses.
Alongside a "no mask, no ride" policy, Turlock's buses will now feature an air filter in the driver's cabin
The city of Turlock will become the first in California to install air cleaning devices across its entire operational bus fleet, as it looks to protect its drivers from the risk of airborne transmission of coronavirus.
Turlock Transit, the city’s transit agency, plans to install 20 AirLabs AirBubbl air cleaning devices in the driver cabins of its buses by the end of the month, including eight devices which are already installed. According to AirLabs, AirBubbl removes more than 95 per cent of airborne viruses and contaminated particulate matter and floods the driver area with over 30,000 litres of clean air every hour, creating a clean air breathing zone for the driver to keep drivers safe.
California is one of the US regions hit hardest by coronavirus, with more than 30,000 registered deaths and more than 2.7 million registered cases since the beginning of the pandemic. The high level of coronavirus in the region is putting hospitals in the state under immense pressure, with 88.2 per cent of intensive care beds occupied in the seven-day period from the start of January.
Manufacturers say the AirBubbl is equally effective at removing air pollution, including harmful ozone gases, nitrogen dioxide (NOx) and particle air pollutants PM2.5 and PM10, which Turlock Transit hopes will play a vital role in protecting drivers long after the pandemic has passed.
California ranks as one of the states with the worst air quality in the US. Data suggests that more than 90 per cent of Californians breathe unhealthy levels of air pollutants every year. California’s air pollution problem is multifaceted with worsening wildfires, high traffic levels and climatic factors all contributing to the issue.
“California faces a huge health challenge both from COVID-19 and from harmful air pollution. These issues are particularly prevalent in the Central Valley and can’t be ignored,” said Wayne York, Transit Manager, Turlock Transit.
“Rider and driver safety is our number one priority and we have implemented a range of safety measures across our fleet to keep our services safe for all. By installing the AirBubbl in our fleet, we are continuing to enhance the safety of our services and protect our drivers and passengers.”
AirBubbl devices have been installed by Turlock Transit as part of a range of measures the transit authority has implemented to protect drivers and passengers throughout the pandemic, including additional disinfecting measures for buses, fewer passengers to aid social distancing, provision of free hand sanitizer and face masks if needed and a requirement for everyone to wear face masks while travelling.