VICTORIA -- BC Transit is taking another step to ensure the safety of its drivers as COVID-19 cases continue to climb in the province.

Translucent vinyl panels will now fully encase drivers on smaller, light-duty vehicles, the transit operator said Monday.

Light-duty buses are mostly used for handyDART community transit services. 

BC Transit says the move goes along with COVID-19 precautions already implemented on larger buses. BC Transit currently does not allow riders to use the front doors on large buses. 

BC Transit also announced Monday that it will extend its pandemic policy of not accepting rider fares until after April 30. 

Customers can enquire about refunds on bus passes for March and April once COVID-19 precautions have been lifted. 

BC Transit says it will continue to offer a reduced level of service during the crisis with a specific focus on getting frontline health-care workers to their jobs, and ensuring all British Columbians can buy groceries.