AT least five more bus drivers based at Arriva in Darlington have tested positive for Covid-19, The Northern Echo understands.

A number of staff members, who are based at the Faverdale depot, are believed to have received positive test results in the past seven days.

It comes after a string of allegations were made against Arriva in Darlington with bus drivers claiming safety measures were being ignored after a colleague tested positive for Covid-19 last week.

READ MORE: Safety concerns raised at Arriva in Darlington after driver tests positive for Covid

Claims emerged that social distancing rules were being flouted, buses were not being cleaned, and some had faced disciplinary action for trying to enforce rules on face coverings.

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It had also been claimed that bus drivers had not been told 'anything' following the positive test as Arriva was slammed for allegedly not telling them who should self-isolate.

But at least five more drivers have now tested positive for Covid-19 this week, according to bus drivers working at the depot.

One, who wishes to remain anonymous, said the confirmed cases had all been using the canteen area together before testing positive.

The canteen, on Tubwell Row, came under fire last week as staff claimed the site was not closed or deep cleaned following the positive Covid-19 test.

Staff had also alleged that social distancing measures were not being 'monitored', staff were not wearing face coverings and that 'groups' of drivers regularly congregated in the office.

At the time, Arriva said it would hold an immediate review into the 'processes' at Darlington as it said it took allegations 'very seriously.' 

In response to the latest claims, Arriva did not confirm how many drivers had tested positive for the virus but said it had introduced a number of safety measures following the review earlier this week.

A spokesperson for Arriva said: "We are continuing to adhere to COVID19 safety procedures within our Darlington depot and review these on a regular basis in order to adapt to the latest government advice and prevailing circumstances at the time.

"As the result of the latest review, our local Depot management team have recently introduced the wearing of face coverings in staff areas, this is supported by our local Union & is a further enhancement to our COVID19 measures, supporting our continued commitment to the safety of our staff.”