Coronavirus and the waterways

Published: Monday, 16 March 2020

THE Canal & River Trust tell that even with the World Heath Organisation upgrading the coronavirus to pandemic status, boaters can still cruise the waterways.

In fact getting away into the fresh air of the waterways away from the crowds, it relates, is to be applauded, with the Trust explaining:

Carry on as normal

"The advice from government is for people to carry on their lives largely as normal.  Other than for planned maintenance works, or recent flood damage, our canals and river navigations remain open for use.  Boaters should follow the government’s guidelines on reducing the risk of catching coronavirus."

The Trust's approach is to follow the government’s advice, it encouraging everyone visiting to reduce the chance of infection by regular hand-washing, using disposable tissues for coughs and sneezes, and self-isolating if they are not well.

Advice will change

It is continually reviewing this and it is likely that that this advice will change over time.  The government’s decision to move to the 'Delay' phase is not unexpected, the government has said clearly that their view is to maintain business as usual as far as possible.

There is however some doubt as to the cancellation of waterway related events, with it likely that these will be affected should the government so decide to limit attendances.

Continuous cruisers

Should a continuous cruiser contract coronavirus, the Trust state they will be allowed to stay in one place for its duration whilst they self-isolate.  Unless self-isolating, continuous cruisers are still expected to move every 14 days, but should anything change you will be informed.

Should the staff at Canal & River suffer the virus and have to self-isolate it states it has contingency plans in place to ensure it can continue to provide its day-do-day service.