Over 12,000 people have been stopped from using a TfL transport service for refusing to wear a face mask since the regulations came into effect, according to the latest figures from TfL.
Fortunately, TfL says that face-covering compliance overall across its services is around 90% across their network, which your correspondent would pretty much agree with on his occasional trips, even if noses hanging out is still surprisingly prevalent.
According to TfL’s figures, up to 31st May, enforcement officers intervened with 188,324 passengers not wearing a face covering or not wearing it correctly. Around half had a legitimate exemption and the majority of the rest complied with the request to put a face mask on.
People who are medically exempted from wearing a face-covering can request a free badge from TfL to show they are exempt – from here. To date, some 55,000 badges have been given out.
However, 12,176 were refused travel and 3,647 Fixed Penalty Notices have been issued.
Nearly half of the penalty notices were paid within 14 days, at the reduced rate of £100 for early payment, and 121 were paid within 28 days. The rest are being pursued for non-payment.
Since 16th March 2021, 214 cases have been listed in court, with 30 defendants pleading guilty to the offence of not wearing a face covering, resulting in fines averaging £516, which is calculated based on the individuals’ circumstances, which the court needs to take into consideration. Of those cases, 144 people did not even turn up to attend court and will be chased if they don’t pay the court-ordered fines
TfL highlighted one case listed in April, where the defendant was found guilty and ordered to pay a fine of £1,730, prosecution costs of £450 and a victim surcharge of £173 – a total of £2,353. The defendant was also ordered to pay his own legal costs.
TfL’s face mask compliance work is being supported by the British Transport Police and the Met Police’s Roads and Transport Policing Command (RTPC), under the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Wearing of Face Coverings on Public Transport) (England) Regulations 2020.