Richard Thomas, Richmond County Board Supervisor and owner of the Thomas Store, used his forklift to offload two new Bay Transit bus shelters yesterday. One of the bus shelters is being installed at the Thomas Store and the other will be installed in the parking lot at the Warsaw Village Shopping Center.
2020 Outstanding Community Program Award recognizes partnership with RCC
(Urbanna, VA) – Bay Transit, the public transportation division of Bay Aging, has been recognized by the Virginia Transit Association (VTA) as the Outstanding Community Program Award winner for 2020. Bay Transit’s partnership with the Rappahannock Community College (RCC) Educational Foundation eliminated fares for all students riding to and from RCC’s four campuses on Bay Transit. The initiative has been hailed by students and administrators as a “godsend.” Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, RCC students were embracing the partnership and RCC was enjoying increased enrollment. After launching the program in mid-January, Bay Transit’s RCC ridership increased 327% versus the same two-month period in 2019 (615 vs. 188).
“We are honored to be recognized by the VTA for outstanding community programs like our innovative partnership with RCC,” said Ken Pollock, Director of Bay Transit. “As it did for so many people, communities and businesses, COVID-19 caused a sudden curtailment of life as we knew it. Yet the pandemic also afforded Bay Transit many new ways to help the communities that we serve. Whether Bay Transit drivers were delivering groceries to area seniors, getting residents to their polling places on Election Day, or helping get essential workers to their jobs, we remain committed to doing everything we can in good times and in difficult times.”
Reflecting on the year that this was, Pollock concluded, “I am so proud of the entire Bay Transit team. Throughout these difficult times, we have never suspended service. It is an honor to serve with this dedicated team.”
INCIDENT PREVENTION THROUGH TECHNOLOGY
Bay Aging, through its Bay Transit Division provides thousands of rides a year throughout the Northern Neck, Middle Peninsula and beyond. The majority of its passengers are picked up and delivered to their homes in rural parts of the region 12 hours a day, 5 days a week.
As you can imagine, the word “rural” is a key component of the environment in which passenger’s live and the Bay Transit buses must reach each and every one.
To do this, many homeowners have residences that are easy to get to and others, well, not so much. This past winter was filled with ice, snow, lots of rain and it all led to driveways that were muddy, slippery and dangerous.
To keep the passengers, Drivers and buses safe, Drivers must be very aware at all times of road and driveway hazards such as those this winter. To keep Drivers aware, there was an awareness campaign this past winter that, to this date was successful. Driving safely was stressed in the Quarterly Safety Meetings and large posters showing buses stuck in the mud but the most effective warning was notifying Drivers several times a day to be aware of their surroundings. Each bus has an electronic tablet that is used for the driving schedule and Transit Dispatchers in the office are able to send safety messages throughout the day that show up on the tablet reminding Drivers to always be careful and to be safe. This technology is effective, efficient and timely and can be spread throughout the whole service area with a single key stroke!
Each year Bay Transit strives to provide the best and safest transportation in the region through professional Drivers, equipment and technology.