In the Midwest, Indian Trails, another long-running, family-owned company, suspended all of its service in Michigan, Illinois and Wisconsin in late March.
In early August, it resumed some of its routes after receiving a share of the emergency federal aid that Congress gave to the transportation departments in Michigan and Wisconsin. But other routes, including commuter service between Detroit and Ann Arbor, Mich., remained suspended.
Coach USA, one of the biggest private bus companies in the country, said a survey of its customers found that more than two-thirds of them planned to resume commuting in July. But in early August, ridership on its lines that connect New York and New Jersey was still down about 90 percent, said Sean Hughes, a spokesman for the company.
On its Short Line and Rockland Coaches that serve suburban communities in New York State and New Jersey, Coach suspended several lines. On others, it cut the number of daily runs from as many as 20 to as few as three.
All of these cutbacks have left some commuters, like Ramie Faris, in the lurch.
Mr. Faris, 31, and his wife bought a house in Bloomfield, N.J., a year ago because it was only a block from a DeCamp bus stop, he said. After working from home for three months at the outset of the pandemic, Mr. Faris resumed commuting this summer to his job as a commercial photographer in Manhattan.
The buses had been less than half-full, and passengers spread out and wore face masks, he said. Best of all, the ride into the city took just 20 minutes, less than half the time it took when traffic was heavy.
The Coronavirus Outbreak ›
Frequently Asked Questions
Updated August 17, 2020
Why does standing six feet away from others help?
- The coronavirus spreads primarily through droplets from your mouth and nose, especially when you cough or sneeze. The C.D.C., one of the organizations using that measure, bases its recommendation of six feet on the idea that most large droplets that people expel when they cough or sneeze will fall to the ground within six feet. But six feet has never been a magic number that guarantees complete protection. Sneezes, for instance, can launch droplets a lot farther than six feet, according to a recent study. It’s a rule of thumb: You should be safest standing six feet apart outside, especially when it’s windy. But keep a mask on at all times, even when you think you’re far enough apart.
I have antibodies. Am I now immune?
- As of right now, that seems likely, for at least several months. There have been frightening accounts of people suffering what seems to be a second bout of Covid-19. But experts say these patients may have a drawn-out course of infection, with the virus taking a slow toll weeks to months after initial exposure. People infected with the coronavirus typically produce immune molecules called antibodies, which are protective proteins made in response to an infection. These antibodies may last in the body only two to three months, which may seem worrisome, but that’s perfectly normal after an acute infection subsides, said Dr. Michael Mina, an immunologist at Harvard University. It may be possible to get the coronavirus again, but it’s highly unlikely that it would be possible in a short window of time from initial infection or make people sicker the second time.
I’m a small-business owner. Can I get relief?
- The stimulus bills enacted in March offer help for the millions of American small businesses. Those eligible for aid are businesses and nonprofit organizations with fewer than 500 workers, including sole proprietorships, independent contractors and freelancers. Some larger companies in some industries are also eligible. The help being offered, which is being managed by the Small Business Administration, includes the Paycheck Protection Program and the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program. But lots of folks have not yet seen payouts. Even those who have received help are confused: The rules are draconian, and some are stuck sitting on money they don’t know how to use. Many small-business owners are getting less than they expected or not hearing anything at all.
What are my rights if I am worried about going back to work?
What is school going to look like in September?
- It is unlikely that many schools will return to a normal schedule this fall, requiring the grind of online learning, makeshift child care and stunted workdays to continue. California’s two largest public school districts — Los Angeles and San Diego — said on July 13, that instruction will be remote-only in the fall, citing concerns that surging coronavirus infections in their areas pose too dire a risk for students and teachers. Together, the two districts enroll some 825,000 students. They are the largest in the country so far to abandon plans for even a partial physical return to classrooms when they reopen in August. For other districts, the solution won’t be an all-or-nothing approach. Many systems, including the nation’s largest, New York City, are devising hybrid plans that involve spending some days in classrooms and other days online. There’s no national policy on this yet, so check with your municipal school system regularly to see what is happening in your community.
Then, on Aug. 5, DeCamp surprised him and its other remaining riders by announcing on social media that it would cease operations indefinitely at the end of that week.