Cleaners applying the long-lasting viruscide to trains at Bedford 24 April Image GTR

Electrostatic wands and special backpacks deliver a viruscide that kills Coronavirus for up to 30 days

Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) has announced that its entire fleet of Southern, Thameslink, Great Northern and Gatwick Express trains, stations and staff areas have been treated with a powerful new viruscide which sticks to surfaces, killing the Coronavirus for up to 30 days.

Stations and staff areas are treated, and all 2,700 of its train carriages are sanitised every night.

While the current advice remains to only use public transport if you absolutely have to, GTR said that the product provides another layer of protection for passengers who do need to travel such as key workers and staff who are valiantly supporting the national effort on the front line.

GTR has also ordered 1,000 no-touch hand sanitisers for staff and passengers which are being distributed to stations.

A specially-developed app also tells staff at-a-glance when each train carriage was last cleaned with the long-lasting viruscide.

Engineering Director Steve Lammin said:

“Since the outbreak of this pandemic we have been doing all we can to protect our passengers and staff by ensuring our trains, and stations have enhanced cleaning regimes, and a switch in focus to high-touch areas and the increased use of anti-viral agents.

“We are now using a product that will kill Coronavirus for up to 30 days and we are applying this to surfaces across our network on a 21-day cycle. We want to do everything possible to work with passengers and staff to keep them safe and this will further protect everyone who is working so hard for this country.”

Electrostatic ‘wands’ have been used around stations and staff areas and GTR is deploying ‘Storm’ virus-killer backpacks which were used in NHS Nightingale Hospitals, as they quickly cover large areas.

On trains, the new product needs to be applied traditionally with a microfibre cloth. In all locations, it is applied only after the entire surface area has been thoroughly cleaned and degreased.

Stations, trains and staff areas were already receiving enhanced cleans through additional extra staff, new 24-hour viruscide products and a switch to focus attention on passenger and staff touchpoints.