GRTC and COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

SYSTEM STATUS: (Updated 8AM 3/30/2020)

  • GRTC is operating service normally.

  • Passengers are asked to only ride GRTC for essential trips. Until further notice, customers are not allowed to remain on-board a single bus beyond their one-way trip. No extended rides on a single vehicle will be allowed.  

  • Unaccompanied minors are not allowed to ride GRTC during the COVID-19 emergency. Solo minors in work uniforms or with their employee badges are permitted to ride GRTC to/from work.

  • All on-board fare collection and enforcement suspended during the COVID-19 emergency.

  • Pulse fare enforcer staff is only operating at Pulse Platforms to offer customer assistance. GRTC has an extra Pulse bus in service to minimize crowding on any single vehicle.

  • Kings Dominion Express 102x is discontinued until at least mid-May 2020.

  • CARE On-Demand partner UZURV is experiencing high call volumes and delays. Temporarily UZURV is only accepting trips for 7-days in advance, not the normal 30-days.

  • GRTC Administrative Office is closed to the public. Only staff and essential appointments are permitted. RideFinders is closed to the public until further notice.

  • Lost & Found is available only by appointment. Please call in advance to schedule.

  • All GRTC public meetings are canceled until further notice.

Press Releases:

GRTC is closely monitoring updates on the COVID-19 virus spread in Virginia so that we may continue to take reasonable precautions to address the risk. The well-being of our staff and passengers is paramount. GRTC, like transit systems across the country, has been in communication with the FTA about our actions, as well as with our local partners. GRTC has been providing updates to Virginia’s Department of Rail and Public Transportation (DRPT). GRTC is also monitoring other transit systems for their responses and any enhanced protocols. 

Cleaning:

GRTC already has procedures in place to prevent the spread of diseases on buses by frequent cleaning. 

  • As of March 26, more than 90% of the fleet is cleaned daily. Normally, a quarter of our buses (about 35 buses a day) are rotated every weekday morning before the start of the service day for cleaning, where all publicly used surfaces and high-touch areas (fareboxes, seat handles, seats, door handles, etc.) are wiped down with disinfectant cleaners, the floors are mopped with disinfectant, and windows are cleaned with disinfectant. This means the entire fleet is normally disinfected every four days.
  • GRTC increased the frequency of fleet cleaning, prioritizing CARE vehicles and Pulse buses. CARE vehicles are used by many at-risk passengers and Pulse buses carry more passengers than any other vehicle consistently. 
  • Pulse stations are already cleaned at least once a day using disinfectants. GRTC also normally cleans the Ticket Vending Machines daily.

Passengers:

Personal trash bags are being installed on buses for passengers to use. We encourage passengers to take a bag, dispose of tissues and other trash in these bags, and take your trash bag with you when you exit the bus. Many stops have trash cans where you can deposit your trash.

Passengers continue to see/hear regular public service announcements about helping us prevent the spread of germs (cover your cough, use tissues, etc.). Passengers should follow recommended guidelines for proper hygiene (CDC: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/prevention-treatment.html).

If a passenger on the bus is in need of immediate medical assistance, the Operator will contact Radio to request emergency services. If a passenger is ill with bodily fluids expelled on the bus, the bus is immediately pulled out of service for cleaning. On-board passengers are transferred to a clean replacement bus to continue their trip.  

For RideFinders clients, a reminder that the Emergency Ride Home (ERH) program is not available for building closures/evacuations, weekend usage or during inclement weather.  

The most important action the public can take is to stay updated and follow recommended guidelines from official sources:

GRTC Employees:

GRTC is committed to the safety, health, and financial well-being of its staff. At our headquarters, steps have already been taken. Cleaning of high-touch surfaces has increased during our routine daily cleaning of the facility. Hand sanitizer stations are available throughout the property. Maintenance and cleaning staff already use protective gloves, and Operators may also request protective gloves. GRTC’s procurement team is researching orders for disinfectant wipes and on-bus hand sanitizers for our frontline employees, but the order time is currently at least four to six weeks.

At RideFinders, cleaning frequency was also increased, including of high-touch surfaces. Front desk staff have protective gloves.

Our frontline staff, including Operators, Supervisors, Cleaners and Mechanics, are taking every reasonable precaution to protect themselves and each other while serving the public. GRTC maintains a high level of confidence in the safety of our service for our staff and riders.