Coronavirus (COVID-19) updates

This page contains the following information:

Information about complimentary vehicle sanitisation is available on our dedicated Sanitisation Stations webpage.

Commission Resources

Eligibility for taxi industry COVID-19 support package

For information on eligbility for the Taxi Industry Assistance Package please refer to the eligiblity document below.

Download the eligbility criteria document 

COVID-19 Fact Sheet

For information and advice about the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, point to point drivers can refer to the COVID-19 Fact Sheet for the Point to Point Industry.

 Download the fact sheet here 

COVID-19 Infographic: Driving and travelling in taxis and hire vehicles (including rideshare) 

An infographic to explain the safety measures that should be implemented by passengers who need to travel in taxis or hire vehicles (including rideshare) during, or following, their 14 day isolation period.

Download the infographic here 

COVID-19 Infographic: Safe travel tips for the point to point transport industry

Restrictions on public gatherings of two or more people do not apply to taxis and hire vehicles in NSW. Download our safe trips infographic offering information for both drivers and passengers who are travelling in taxis and hire vehicles, including rideshare, during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Download the infographic here 

COVID-19 poster: How to handle and wear masks in the workplace

NSW Health advice is that wearing face masks should be considered in situations where people are unable to physically distance from each other. More information about face masks is available under Health and Wellbeing.

Please find below a poster advising point to point transport drivers on how to handle and wear masks in the workplace.

Download the poster here 

Reporting COVID-19 related Notifiable Occurrences

Drivers and service providers that have been tested for COVID-19 (regardless of the test results) are required to report these incidences as Notifiable Occurrences via the Industry Portal.

For COVID-19 related Notifiable Occurrences, please select category (A) in the Industry Portal as it is the most relevant category for medical and or hospital related incidences.

Service Providers that select YES when reporting a COVID-19 related occurrence, will likely receive a follow up call from the Commission.

Health and wellbeing

Public health orders 

Public health orders have been issued to protect the community and reduce the spread of COVID-19 infection. Find out about places that are closed, activities that can continue and how the restrictions affect what you can and can't do.

Travel restrictions under new public health orders

The temporary closure of the NSW/Victorian border came into effect from 12.01am Wednesday 8 July. It is supported by a new order, the Public Health (COVID-19 Border Control) Order 2020.

  • NSW residents travelling from Victoria to NSW will need an entry permit and will need to self-isolate for 14 days.
  • Residents of border towns on both sides of the NSW/Victorian border need to secure a permit to cross the border. They do not need to isolate unless they have travelled to a place in Victoria outside a border community.
  • Entry permits must be secured by both Point to Point Drivers and passengers and must be carried at crossings.

For further information about the new public health orders and restrictions under the orders, please visit health.nsw.gov.au/coronavirus.

Find more information relating to the NSW border in border updates

Face masks

NSW Health now advises that it is strongly recommended that customers when using the public transport network across NSW, and customer facing staff, wear a face mask. Masks are also strongly recommended for passengers and drivers of point to point transport vehicles.

Although the use of masks is not mandatory, it is strongly recommended where social distancing is not possible.

As social distancing is not possible in most point to point transport vehicles the wearing of masks is a reasonable and recommended line of defence in slowing the spread of Coronavirus.

Other measures include people staying at home if they are unwell, frequently washing their hands or using a hand sanitiser, physical distancing where possible and using the vehicle sanitisation stations where available.

Point to point transport providers are reminded that they have a primary responsibility to ensure the safety of drivers and passengers.  

We encourage all point to point service providers to review your COVID-19 Safety Plan in light of NSW Health advice. At all times, service providers should be guided by your own work health and safety risk assessment and communicate your risk management strategies and procedures to drivers and customers.

For more information on face masks go to Australian Government Department of Health.

Download face mask FAQ here 

COVID-19 flyer: Managing wellbeing 

Under the point to point transport law, service providers have a duty of care, so far as is reasonably practicable, to ensure the health and safety of drivers, passengers and others in connection with the provision of the service. Here are some tips for service providers to help support their drivers during the Coronavirus outbreak.

Download the flyer here 

Drivers should follow safe hygiene practices to prevent the spread of illness, including:

  • Wash hands often with soap and water.

  • Drivers should employ standard cleaning practices at the end of each shift, as part of good hygiene practice by wiping down surfaces with disinfectant.

  • In the event of a passenger spreading droplets (such as sneezing, coughing or vomiting), clean surfaces with appropriate disinfectant wipes so that the potential spread of infection can be minimised.
  • The use of alcohol-based hand sanitiser is advised where possible between hand washes and after opening and closing doors, moving luggage, exchanging payment and after personal contact.
  • Customers are encouraged to use contactless payments where possible, to further reduce chances of community spread.
  • For those services that do not offer contactless payment, we are advising people to wash their hands or use hand sanitiser to limit the spread of viruses.

COVID-19 Infographic: Car cleaning tips for the point to point transport industry

An infographic to explain how often you should clean your vehicle, what parts you should clean and which cleaning products to use.

Download the infographic here 

Video: How to clean your point to point vehicle

In order to prevent the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19), drivers of point to point vehicles need to carry out good hygiene practices and protect themselves and their passengers from the spread of illness.

Here’s a short video guide on how to clean your point to point vehicle. 

Border Updates

NSW/VIC border region

The NSW Government has amended the Border Control Public Health Order to allow border region residents to travel in the region without requiring a permitted purpose. A link to the amended order is here.

This means that Victorian Border Region Residents can cross the NSW / Victorian for any purpose provided they have not been to an area listed in the Victorian Area Direction in the past 14 days. It is important to note that Victorian residents are still not permitted to travel into NSW beyond the border region, as shown in the map available here.

While the Order does not create an obligation on drivers of point to point vehicles to check customer’s permits, it is an important part of your COVID-Safe Plan to remind customers that they are not permitted to cross the NSW/Victorian border if they are not a Border Region Resident and do not hold a valid Border Region Resident permit.

For more information in relation to the restricted area or area of concern in Victoria, please visit NSW Government's COVID-19 areas of concern in Victoria.

Border update NSW/VIC

Anyone proceeding to hotel quarantine cannot be transported using point to point transport vehicles (taxis, hire vehicles including rideshare).

From 12:01am on Friday 7 August, any person entering NSW from Victoria will be required to arrive by aircraft via Sydney Airport and go into mandatory hotel quarantine for 14 days.

Victorian arrivals must proceed to hotel quarantine by dedicated shuttle bus and remain in hotel quarantine at their own cost in accordance with the Public Health (COVID-19 Air Transportation Quarantine Order) 2020 or leave NSW.

The following permits issued prior to 12:01AM on 7 August 2020 are revoked (unless the person has already arrived in NSW):

  • Returning NSW resident
  • Critical service worker (excluding freight or the transportation of persons);
  • Relevant education visitor (this is for Victorian residents attending boarding school or university as a student, parent or teacher)
  • Person transiting through NSW

Critical service workers wanting to apply for a permit to enter NSW from Victoria must be able to demonstrate:

  • The service is highly specialised; and
  • Not able to be provided by the person remotely; and
  • Not available in NSW or VIC in the same form; and
  • Have documentary evidence from the head of the organisation that employs the critical worker addressing the three points above. 

To apply for a NSW border permit visit service.nsw.gov.au.

Border update NSW/QLD

From 1am on Saturday 8 August, the Queensland Government will close the Queensland/NSW border to all NSW, VIC and ACT residents in accordance with the QLD Border Restrictions Direction (No.11).

The Queensland Government has declared all of NSW, VIC and the ACT COVID-19 hotspots. People who have been in declared hotspots in the past 14 days must not enter Queensland. Returning Queensland residents must complete a Queensland Border Declaration Pass and will be subject to government directed quarantine.

Exemptions include:

  • Border Zone Residents;
  • Persons performing the following essential activities:
    • National defence, state security and Police;
    • Health services and emergency services;
    • Transport freight and logistics (excluding maritime crew and air crew who are covered under different arrangements) NOTE – this includes transporting passengers by road and rail;
    • Specialist worker (the services must be critical to QLD and performed in QLD);
    • Air Crew and Maritime Crew

To apply for a border declaration pass visit qld.gov.au.

Industry links

  • Visit the NSW Government health website for the latest information and advice on novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
  • Safework Australia has developed an in-depth fact sheet for taxi and ride share services: Minimising the risk of exposure to COVID-19
  • Call the National Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080 for general advice or healthdirect on 1800 022 222 if you have symptoms.
  • The Industry Contact Centre can be reached on 131 727 and is open for industry enquires from Monday to Friday 8am-5pm.
  • Infection prevention and control cleaning information can be found by visiting the Clinical Excellence Commission Fact Sheet
  • If you require translating or interpreting services, call 131 450. The phone number of your state or territory public health agency is available at www.health.gov.au/state-territory-contacts.

Business support and advice

Financial stimulus package

The NSW Treasurer, Minister for Transport and Roads, and Regional Minister for Transport and Roads have announced a $12.6 million financial stimulus package for the taxi industry, in response to COVID-19.

Registered taxi vehicle owners including Wheelchair Accessible Taxi (WAT) vehicles will be contacted in the coming weeks regarding the industry stimulus package.

There will no longer be an application process through Service NSW.  Instead, a subsidy cheque of $2,900 will be sent to registered Taxi and WAT owners who are eligible in response to COVID-19.

Please note: This subsidy will be automatically paid to eligible registered taxi operators.  There is no need to apply.

It is a condition of this payment that you keep the taxi registered for 6 months from the date of receiving this support payment. If you de-register your vehicle, you may need to repay this support payment.

Read the industry news article for details of available assistance and a summary of who is eligible. Full details of the eligibility criteria are available under Commission Resources.

Are you eligible? Find out from the flowchart below.

Download flowchart here 

Download FAQs here 

For more information call the Industry Contact Centre on 131 727.

Repayment Deferral for the Wheelchair Accessible Taxi Interest Free Loan Scheme

In response to the changes in the way people are travelling during the Covid-19 pandemic and in recognition of the role Wheelchair Accessible Taxis (WAT) play in delivering essential transport services for vulnerable members of the community, Transport for NSW is deferring payments on all Wheelchair Accessible Taxi Interest Free loans. For loan recipients, payments will be $0 for April, May and June 2020.

A further review of the pandemic restrictions and the impact they are having on the way people travel will be undertaken in mid-June to determine if any further deferral of loan repayments is required.

All WAT Interest Free loan agreements will be extended by the length of the postponement period.

Each loan recipient has been contacted by Transport for NSW and provided advice on how this postponement affects their loan. A process has been developed for any loan recipients wishing to continue to make their usual payments during this period. If you require further information about the WAT Interest Free Loan Scheme, please email your questions to TransportSocialPolicy@transport.nsw.gov.au

Support for businesses and individuals

For information on how the Australian Government is supporting businesses in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, please refer to the relevant Government websites:

The latest Government departments can be found by visiting australia.gov.au

FAQs

What should drivers do to maintain good hygiene practices?

Drivers are advised to wash hands often with soap and water and use alcohol-based hand sanitiser where possible between hand washes and after opening and closing doors, moving luggage, exchanging payment and after personal contact.

What cleaning practices should be carried out and when?

Drivers should employ standard cleaning practices at the end of each shift, as part of good hygiene practice by wiping down surfaces with disinfectant.

What areas of vehicles should be focused on when cleaning?

Areas of the car drivers should focus on when cleaning include:

  • Door handles both internal and external

  • Internal grab handles above doors
  • Seats and headrests
  • Seatbelts
  • Window controls
  • Centre console
  • Cup holders
  • Dash
  • Buttons and radio
  • Payment terminal
  • Steering wheel
  • Boot lid and handle

When should a vehicle be cleaned?

Drivers should clean their vehicles at the end of each shift and after a passenger leaves, if they had been unwell e.g. sneezing or coughing while in the vehicle.

What cleaning products should I use?

Drivers should use alcohol-based wipes where available or household disinfectant to clean their vehicle.

What social distancing measures should be in place for drivers?

Passengers should sit in the back seat of the vehicle, handle their own luggage where possible and use contactless payments - where cash payment is required. Drivers and passengers should wash their hands or use alcohol based hand sanitiser afterwards.

What should drivers do if they feel sick?

Drivers should immediately cease providing services:

  • if they are feeling unwell or displaying symptoms of COVID-19

  • have been tested for COVID-19 and awaiting results
  • have been required by health authorities to self-isolate

What precautions should drivers take during a shift to practice good hygiene?

  • covering coughs and sneezes with an elbow or a tissue

  • disposing of tissues properly

  • washing hands often with soap and water, including before and after eating and after going to the toilet
  • using alcohol-based hand sanitisers where available
  • cleaning and disinfecting surfaces
  • washing body, hair (including facial hair) and clothes thoroughly every day
  • staying more than 1.5 metres away from others where practical. 

What government support and assistance is to the point to point transport industry and drivers?

Support resources:

Support services: