WASHINGTON (WDVM) — The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority is taking measures to combat the omicron variant by announcing service adjustments and protections for its employees and customers.

Starting Jan. 10, Metro will be reducing service schedules and employees will be required weekly testing.

By Jan 16. Metro employees who fail to comply with the new testing and vaccination policies will be put on unpaid suspension, with 30 days to comply or termination.

“Scaling back service will ensure customers who rely on Metrobus, Metrorail and MetroAccess for transportation have a more reliable schedule,” said CEO/GM Paul Wiedefeld. “Metro employees live in some of the neighborhoods hardest hit by the pandemic and are exposed to the surge in the region and throughout the nation. It’s important that the task force take steps to make Metro operationally sound to meet the needs of our customers.” 

Here are service adjustments from the WMATA website:

  • Metrorail will continue to operate on all lines as scheduled, with customers experiencing more frequent service at stations served by multiple lines. 
  • Metrobus will reduce service on weekdays to a Saturday schedule with additional trips on some routes, which is roughly 75 percent of regular Metrobus service and protects key routes that serve hospitals, grocery stores, and other essential destinations. 
  • Bus operators will be permitted to bypass customers not wearing masks for their health and safety. 
  • Metrobus customers are advised to consider alternative sources of transportation like Metrorail to travel throughout the region. 
  • MetroAccess will reduce shared rides and increase accessibility rides. For more information about MetroAccess, please visit wmata.com/metroaccess

For more details on upcoming changes click here.