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Uber orders drivers to wear masks amid coronavirus

Uber has ordered drivers in multiple countries to wear face masks amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Drivers for the ride-hailing app in the US, Canada, Mexico, India, and most of Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, and Africa will all have to wear face masks before they can go to work as a taxi service.

The new rule will come into effect on Monday (18.05.20), and comes as part of Uber's new coronavirus policy, which has been toughened up in recent weeks as drivers are allowed to continue operating.

According to the BBC, the UK is not on Uber's list of countries who must comply with the mask rules, because government guidance in the UK advises but does not require people to wear face coverings in confined spaces.

However, Uber have said they have already distributed free protective equipment to UK drivers, including more than a million single-use face masks, as well as 95,000 cleaning sprays, and plan to send out a further two million masks in the coming weeks.

An Uber spokesman told the BBC: "As well as working with Unilever to provide drivers with free sanitising products, Uber is distributing millions of masks and directly reimbursing drivers if they choose to source the PPE themselves."

Meanwhile, Uber, along with taxi firm Addison Lee, has also announced new safety measures to protect both drivers and passengers.

Addison Lee will fit perspex partition screens between drivers and passengers across its 4,000 vehicles next week, whilst Uber is paying the AA to instal partitions in 400 cars in Newcastle, Sunderland and Durham as part of an initial pilot.

Liam Griffin, chief executive of London-based Addison Lee, said: "We know there is significant demand from drivers, passengers, businesses and the general public for more to be done to make transport cleaner and safer as we go back to work - including calls for the introduction of partition screens into private hire vehicles.

"That's why we have taken the decision to begin rolling out the installation of safety screens between drivers and passenger seats."

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