Concord Coach Lines to suspend bus service after passenger tests positive for COVID-19

  • A row of Concord Coach Line buses sit outside the maintenance facility and corporate offices on South Main Street in Concord on Wednesday, March 25, 2020. GEOFF FORESTER—Monitor staff

  • A row of Concord Coach Line buses sit outside the maintenance facility and corporate offices on South Main Street in Concord on Wednesday, March 25, 2020. GEOFF FORESTER—Monitor staff

Published: 3/25/2020 7:00:40 AM

Concord Coach Lines will suspend bus service throughout New England on Saturday after a former passenger tested positive for COVID-19.

The passenger was on a Concord Coach Lines bus on four separate trips between March 11 and March 16, according to the Department of Health and Human Services.

The company will continue its current schedule through Friday and will resume service “once the threat to public health from the coronavirus pandemic is determined to be over,” the company announced Wednesday.

“We do carry essential travelers, so this decision was not made lightly. We feel like we can and should support guidance that people should stay home and are concerned with the continued exposure of our employees and riders,” said Concord Coach Lines Vice President, Benjamin Blunt. “We look forward to the day when we can resume our operations and support the travels of all our riders, but now is a time to stay home.”

Concord Coach Lines operates Concord Express, Boston Express and Dartmouth Coach services that operate passenger service between communities in New Hampshire and Maine, as well as express service to Logan Airport and to New York City.  Its North Country service in New Hampshire is supplemented by federal rural transportation funds.

State officials issued the warning of potential exposure on the bus line Tuesday evening.

The bus routes cited by state officials  include:

■March 11: 3:15 a.m. from Concord – Boston Express Londonderry – South Station – Boston Logan Airport.

■March 13: 5:40 p.m. from Boston Logan Airport – South Station – Concord – Tilton – Plymouth – Lincoln – Littleton.

■March 14: 5 a.m. from Concord – Boston Express Londonderry – Boston Express Salem – South Station – Boston Logan Airport.

■March 16: 1:40 p.m. from Boston Logan Airport – South Station – Concord.

Anyone who rode any of those bus lines may have been exposed and should stay at home and monitor their health for fever or respiratory illness, according to DHHS. Any person who was on those buses and has developed symptoms should stay away from other people, and immediately contact their healthcare provider.

The drivers on those trips have been in isolation since Concord Coach was notified and have shown no symptoms of the COVID-19 illness, the company said.

All pre-purchased tickets will be honored on any trip before December 31, 2021, the company said. Passengers requesting a refund should email the company at refunds@concordcoachlines.com. However, the company asked for some patience due to a “significant volume of requests with limited staffing.”

The company, which dates back to 1967 and has some four dozen buses, urged customers to check its website for updates.

AGs take stand on price gouging

New Hampshire Attorney General Gordon MacDonald joined 32 other Attorneys General in signing a letter urging online corporate giants like Amazon, Facebook, Ebay, Walmart, and Craigslist to more rigorously monitor price gouging practices as a result of the COVID-19 public heath crisis.

The letter calls on companies to do more to prevent sellers from charging “unconscionable prices” for products that are essential to public health, like hand sanitizer, medical masks and cleaning supplies, as the COVID-19 outbreak continues to spread across the country 

Specifically, the letter request that companies take the following steps to crack down on price gouging:

■Set policies and enforce restrictions on price gouging during emergencies by examining historical seller prices, and the price of the same or similar products, to identify and eliminate gougers.

■Trigger price-gouging protections prior to an emergency declaration, as soon as online systems detect conditions like pending weather events or future possible health risks.

■Implement a complaint portal for consumers to report potential price gouging.

The attorney general’s office urged consumers to use added vigilance when making purchases and interacting with online sellers.

“New Hampshire does not have a specific anti-price gouging statute; however, state law does prohibit unfair and deceptive conduct and the Attorney General’s Office vigorously enforces,” those laws, the  New Hampshire consumer protection laws.

To report unfair or deceptive conduct by a business, contact the Consumer Protection Hotline by phone: 1-888-468-4454 or email: DOJ-CPB@doj.nh.gov.


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