Wearing a mask is compulsory in the tram as in all public transport.


J. Urbach / 20Mins

  • The vast majority of passengers comply with wearing the compulsory mask in Nantes public transport.

  • However, this measure would generate tensions in recent weeks.

"We felt the subject rising for a few weeks ... There are a lot of stories, fortunately not all so extreme".

Two days after the assault of a tram driver by an armed man in Nantes, tongues are loosened among the staff of the TAN.

Mandatory in public transport since early May, wearing a mask seems to generate tension in Nantes buses and trams.

Sunday evening, on line 1, it is a voice announcement recalling the measure that aroused the anger of a man.

Climbing without a mask at Haluchère, the passenger took out a pistol and threatened the driver with it, before getting off at the next stop.

"Without going as far as physical injuries, this subject causes a number of altercations," confirms Pascal Lucas, elected CFDT at the CHSCT of Semitan.

People called to order tell us "I do what I want, you are not from the police".

For example, I wanted to control a man who came on board without his mask, and in addition with a dog.

I went to see him for these two reasons but it went into a spin.

Before getting off at the next station, he came to spit on my clothes… ”

"We had to get him out of the train"

According to the staff interviewed, the vast majority of passengers respect the wearing of masks in the trains, as required by the internal regulations.

"The very small percentage that remains, it can be an oversight but in general it's provocation", estimates Julien *, controller.

We only have words as a weapon, so we try to negotiate… When we have a small stock of masks to distribute, that can help calm things down.


Sylvain *, too, believes that it is one more concern to manage while incivilities of all kinds "have multiplied for several years" according to him.

The driver, also an intervention and assistance agent, complained "several times to the management".

“One evening, a client came up without a mask and turned a deaf ear despite our comments,” he says.

Passengers got involved, some wanted to give it to him, but nothing helped, the tension rose between the people.

It was starting to get unmanageable, we had to get it out of the train before it got into a general fight.

I had two other cases, almost similar.


Police presence

After Sunday's incident, the management of Semitan (which decided to cut the network from 10 p.m. Monday evening) would like to point out that patrols are regularly organized in the trains.

Promised by the municipality, the metropolitan transport brigade is more than ever expected, while the CFDT even calls for the holding of “public security meetings”.

“The operations of the national police over one or two hours is insufficient, regrets Pascal Lucas.

An additional presence is needed so that users feel that the network is sufficiently monitored.


Especially since according to Pascal Lucas, another problem complicates the controls since last week.

“Some tell us they don't have a ticket because of the lockdown.

However, there was never any question of transport being free… ”

* These first names have been changed


Nantes: The 70 municipal police officers and the transport brigade will not arrive until next year


Nantes: A tram driver pointed at with a pistol for a mask story

  • Covid 19

  • Confinement

  • Coronavirus

  • Public transport

  • Tram

  • Nantes