Training and communications are the cornerstones of the GRTC Safety Program.
New Hire Training
New operators are trained for six to eight weeks. This includes two weeks of classroom training and four to six weeks behind the wheel training with trainers and experienced operators. This training covers:
Refresher Training is provided to every bus operator a minimum of every two years. There are two components: eight (8) hours of classroom training plus behind the wheel observations and instructions. Some training sessions are virtual. Defensive driving techniques are discussed.
Retraining is required when an operator is involved in a preventable accident. Operator and trainer will discuss the accident to determine corrective action. The trainer will also conduct a road observation with the operator. Some training sessions are virtual.
Electronic Simulator mimics actual driving and road conditions in a wide variety of circumstances and weather. It is used for both new operator training and the refresher training class. It benefits the new operator with time to get familiar with how the bus handles before actually driving on the street. It allows the trainer to evaluate the driving skills of the operator in a safe environment.
Safety Ride Along. This program is regularly conducted by supervisors and trainers. The supervisor/trainer conducts the road observation and determines if remedial training is needed.
Safety messages and slogans are displayed throughout GRTC Headquarters. These various safety messages and slogans are displayed on banner stands throughout the work place. Safety messages are also shown on the Electronic Communications System (ECS) electronic monitors throughout the company as well as the GRTC intranet. One message example is, “Safety First, Service Always.” During the COVID-19 pandemic, additional safety messaging appears.
Quarterly Safety Meetings are mandatory for all operators. Safety issues are identified to discuss at each meeting. Guest speakers are invited to speak at the meetings. During the COVID-19 pandemic, group meetings are replaced with smaller discussions outdoors at key locations in the service area.
Annual Safety Awards. Those operators who have not had a preventable accident during the calendar year from January 1 through December 31 qualify to receive the safety award. An operator may not have missed more than 30 days of work during the calendar year.
Driving Standards Policy was established in 2010. All Commercial Drivers License (CDL) licensed employees’ Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) records are randomly checked. All employees who drive a company vehicle are required to report all motor vehicle violations received whether driving a personal automobile or while driving a GRTC vehicle within three (3) business days of receiving the violation.
Safety and Health Committee was reestablished in 2013. This committee is comprised of operators and management. The purpose of the committee is to create and maintain a safe work environment for fellow employees. The committee is responsible for hazard reduction and hazard resolution. The committee meets monthly. All unsafe conditions are reported through the committee and the committee determines or recommends remedial/corrective action.