The Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) announced that it would be resuming its intra-state bus services from Thursday amid the fourth phase of the COVID-19 lockdown. APSRTC vice-chairman and managing director Madireddy Pratap informed that the buses will run across the state except in the containment zones. He also said that the decision on running buses to the neighbouring states will be taken after getting a response from them.
"Intra-state services will start from tomorrow. For inter-state services, we have written to neighbouring states Telangana, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. After they respond, we will take a decision on it," said the APSRTC vice-chairman.
"City services will be opened in Vijayawada and Visakhapatnam only after lockdown 4. At first, 1,683 buses in all categories will run in 434 routes from tomorrow. Buses will run in all areas except in containment zones," he added.
Regarding the precautions that need to be taken by the passengers boarding the state buses Pratap said that all passengers needed to cover their faces before boarding buses and if needed, masks would be available at the stalls at the cost of Rs 10. Sanitiser facility is also being made available at all bus stands. "Our engineers have made automatic hand sanitiser dispensers. It will be kept in all bus depots," he added.
Madireddy Pratap also spoke about the financial losses that the APSRTC had to face amid the lockdown saying, "During the lockdown, it has incurred losses of approximately Rs 1200 crore" and added that "maintenance expenses recurred in these 58 days is approximately Rs 700 crore."
Two COVID-19 related deaths were reported in Andhra Pradesh taking the toll to 52 even as 57 more tested positive, pushing the total number of infections in the state to 2,489, a health bulletin said on Tuesday. Samples of 9,739 people were tested and 69 have been discharged from various hospitals after treatment, taking the cumulative recoveries to 1,596. The number of active patients are now at 691.