Accessibility & Assistance
Drivers will not carry or lift parcels/carry-on items greater than 20 pounds in weight. Drivers are not permitted to transport furniture or appliances for passengers.
Section 37.3 of the Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations implementing the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) (49 CFR Parts 27, 37, and 38) defines a wheelchair as a mobility aid belonging to any class of 3 or more wheeled devices, usable indoors, designed or modified for and used by individuals with mobility impairments, whether operated manually or powered.
A wheelchair does not exceed 30 inches in width and 48 inches in length measured 2 inches above the ground and does not weigh more than 600 pounds when occupied. Drivers may assist passengers using mobility aids. Drivers will not assist passengers using mobility aids up or down stairs. Passengers are responsible for either a ramp or someone other than the bus driver to help them in and out of their home, doctor’s office, etc. where steps are present.
Drivers are not permitted to assist individuals in transferring from a mobility aid to regular vehicle seating. Such riders must provide their own Personal Care Attendant (PCA) to assist in their transfer. Drivers are not permitted to push mobility aids whose weight of combined passenger and mobility aid exceeds 300 pounds. These passengers are responsible for their own movement or a PCA to push and maneuver their mobility aid onto the bus into a forward facing position and to move it out of and away from the bus when de-boarding. All mobility aids must be secured by the 4-point tie-down system. Powered mobility aids must be in the “off” position while on the lift.
Drivers may enter a commercial lobby to assist a rider to a vehicle but are not permitted to enter a residence. Drivers are permitted to assist riders with activities directly related to boarding and de-boarding the bus. Drivers are permitted to assist special needs passengers with their packages up to the limits outlined in guideline #12 up to the door of the residence. One Personal Care Attendant (PCA) may ride with a disabled rider to assist them with their personal needs without charge. Only drivers will operate mobility aid lift/restraint system equipment. All medical equipment (oxygen tanks, walkers, etc.) will be secured by the driver for the duration of the ride. Drivers are permitted to assist in fastening/ unfastening seat belts/shoulder restraints if requested by riders. Child safety seats are available on all City Bus vehicles for parents/guardians to use on a first come first serve basis.
Reasonable modification of policies and practices
The Reasonable Modification Final Rule, effective July 13, 2015, clarifies that public transportation providers are required to make reasonable modifications to their polices, practices, and procedures to avoid discrimination and ensure programs and services are accessible to individuals with disabilities. It applies to public entities providing fixed route, demand-response (dial-a-ride), and complementary paratransit services. It establishes that an individual’s disability cannot preclude a public transportation entity from providing full access to its service, except when it would fundamentally alter the service.
The Final Rule also provides 27 examples of what a reasonable modification is and is not, and clarifies the definition of origin-to-destination service. The issue of origin-to-destination policy has long had varied interpretations and was unevenly applied throughout the nation. The new rule requires paratransit providers that primarily operate curb-to-curb service to make reasonable modifications for those passengers who need assistance beyond the curb so that they can use the service.