Covid: Lothian Buses announce potential disruption as Omicron impacts staff numbers

Lothian Buses has announced that there may be some disruption to its services as the company begins to feel the impacts of the highly transmissible Omicron variant.

Tuesday, 21st December 2021, 8:07 pm

A statement from Nigel Serafini, interim MD of Lothian Buses, said that like many other operators, the Edinburgh bus company was beginning to feel the strain of trying to maintain standards and regular services while working with reduced staff numbers.

He said that its priority would now be on connecting Edinburgh and the Lothians, but as a result, “regular and high frequency” services may be impacted.

“Across the last few days we have begun to feel the impact of the pandemic on our team resource which has placed considerable pressure on our ability to deliver our services to the levels customers would expect’, he said.

"Sadly it’s likely that as the situation worsens it may well result in wider disruption across our network.”

Mr Serafini continued on to say that customers should take care when planning their travels and continue to follow Scottish Government advice of wearing face masks and leaving the windows open.

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He said: “To ensure we can continue to provide an efficient service for as many customers as possible, our teams are prioritising wider network connectivity to maintain vital links across Edinburgh and the Lothians.

Covid: Lothian Buses announce potential disruption as Omicron impacts staff numbers

"High frequency and express services may be impacted as a result and we would advise all customers to allow for extra time for their journey.

"We sincerely apologise for any inconvenience this may cause and would like to thank all of our customers for their patience and understanding as we endeavour to cope with circumstances outwith our control.”

He added a message of thanks to Lothian Buses staff for going “above and beyond” , and to their families for supporting them in doing so.

This update follows news that ScotRail is continuing to face regular cancellations while operating with dwindling staff numbers.

The First Minister said on Tuesday that the rail operator had over 100 cancellations on Monday due to staff testing positive for Covid-19, or having to isolate having been identified as a close contact.

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