A SEPTA bus driver is the 5th employee for the transit agency to die from the novel coronavirus.
The Transportation Workers Union Local 234 confirmed Yolanda Woodberry, a bus driver at the Frankford Depot who worked at SEPTA for 17 years, died after testing positive for COVID-19.
Woodberry is the 5th SEPTA employee to die from the virus. The four other employees include three maintenance workers and a Regional Rail conductor. Ridership has plummeted to nearly non-existent levels, and tempers over policies like face mask requirements have occasionally led to police-involved incidents on the transit system.
TWU, which represents hundreds of agency employees still working on buses, trolleys and trains during the coronavirus pandemic, has publicly aired grievances with SEPTA leadership during the crisis, citing safety concerns for workers.
Last week, the union threatened to take a work action that could have delayed commutes for essential workers. They later postponed the action however after meeting with SEPTA and Mayor Jim Kenney.
SEPTA changed its boarding policy for buses, requiring passengers board through rear doors and suspended on-board payments amid the pandemic.