De Blasio: NYC subway riders safe from Ebola

New York City Mayor Bill de BlasioBill de BlasioNew York area will lift capacity restrictions May 19 NYC 24-hour subway service resumes May 17 Schumer demands restoration of 24-hour New York subway service MORE (D) is reassuring subway riders that they are not at risk from Ebola after an infected doctor rode the city’s trains.

“Being on the same subway car or living near a person with Ebola does not in itself put someone at risk,” de Blasio (D) said in prepared remarks for a press conference Friday.


“People should rest assured that the extraordinary medical professionals of this city and this state are working to ensure that every protection is in place,” he said. 

The nation’s most populous city is facing its first Ebola case, after Craig Spencer, a Harlem resident, tested positive for the deadly disease on Thursday. He contracted the virus treating Ebola patients in Guinea as part of Doctors Without Borders.

Spencer reportedly traveled on multiple New York City subway lines prior to his diagnosis, triggering fears that he could have spread the disease.

The New York City subway, run by the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA), is the busiest public transportation system in the U.S., averaging more than 5 million riders daily.

New York Gov. Andrew CuomoAndrew CuomoThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Emergent BioSolutions - Can Cheney defy the odds and survive again? New York area will lift capacity restrictions May 19 NYC 24-hour subway service resumes May 17 MORE (D) offered similar assurances on Friday.

"The @MTA has developed in close consultation with @HealthNYGov a protocol to keep its employees and customers safe," Cuomo tweeted

De Blasio said his confidence in the safety of the New York City subway system stemmed from the fact that Ebola "is transmitted only through contact with an infected person's blood or other bodily fluids — not through casual contact.

“New Yorkers who have not been exposed to an infected person's bodily fluids are not at all at risk,” the New York City mayor added.