A MAJOR bus company in Essex is reducing its service after buses have been travelling around empty.

First Essex has stated it will be continuing its services for keyworkers and prioritising hospital links.

However, due to very few people now travelling on buses because of the coronavirus outbreak, the firm have reduced their Monday to Saturday service to a "Sunday Service" level. 

A limited service will also be provided on routes that would not otherwise run on a Sunday.

On Sundays, a normal Sunday service will run except for the X10 and X30 which will both run every two hours.

This action is reflected across the transport sector in the UK and worldwide, most especially with the temporary reduction of rail services to all but essential links.

Steve Wickers, Managing Director of First Essex said: “The Government has increased its measures and advised against any non-essential travel and contact as it works towards reducing the rising number of coronavirus cases being identified.

“The number of people travelling on our services over the last few days has inevitably reduced significantly to the point where some of our buses are not carrying a single person, making this an unprecedented situation that we need to react to.

“To help ensure our services can continue to fulfil the most important needs for our customers during this difficult time, we are reducing our services in Essex, whilst ensuring there are sufficient journeys running to meet the needs of people who are key workers and those needing to visit pharmacy’s, food shops and other emergency facilities.

“It’s important to emphasise that this is a fast-moving and unprecedented challenge for all of us and we will endeavour to keep everyone informed of any further changes to our bus network.

“Our drivers, engineers and support staff are doing a great job in keeping our buses running through this challenging time to which I am proud.

"We are working hard to reflect the latest service information across all our digital channels."

Visit www.firstgroup.com/essex.