March 6, 2020

*UPDATED JUNE 1, 2020*

RTC COVID-19 Information:

The RTC has reopened its physical administrative offices to the public from Monday-Friday 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. People who are not vaccinated are requested to wear a mask. RTC’s administrative offices are located at 1105 Terminal Way, Reno NV 89502. 

RTC Board Meetings:

The RTC has resumed in-person Board Meetings. People who are not vaccinated are requested to wear a mask. 

Transit Services:

The RTC reminds the community that masks are still required on public transportation and at transit facilities. Although mask-wearing mandates are being lifted across the state and the nation, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Transportation Security Administration (TSA) still require all transit drivers and passengers to wear masks onboard RTC buses, at bus stops, and at transit facilities through September 13.

Free masks will be given to passengers upon boarding if they do not already have one. The RTC appreciates the community’s help to keep transit drivers and other passengers safe and healthy.

Although CDC guidance is clear that fully vaccinated people are safe to travel and can resume travel, masks are still required on all modes of public transportation, including transit.

Per the order, the following individuals are exempt from the mask-wearing requirement:

  • A child under the age of 2 years;
  • A person with a disability who cannot wear a mask, or cannot safely wear a mask, because of the disability as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act;
  • A person for whom wearing a mask would create a risk to workplace health, safety, or job duty as determined by the relevant workplace safety guidelines or federal regulations.

RTC’s transit services continue on a normal schedule and RTC’s transit contractors are continuing increased cleaning on transit vehicles and facilities daily. Buses are also cleaned nightly to meet or exceed CDC guidelines. An electrostatic fogging unit is used to kill the virus.

The RTC has worked with its transit contractors to implement the following practices to help keep everyone safe:

  • Hand sanitizer dispensers installed on buses.
  • Installed plexiglass or plastic barrier shields between bus driver and passengers boarding bus.
  • Providing free face coverings on buses and at RTC Customer Service at 4TH STREET STATION in Reno and CENTENNIAL PLAZA in Sparks.
  • Posting signage on buses and at transit stations reminding customers face coverings are required on transit and at transit facilities.
  • Providing complimentary face coverings onboard RTC RIDE, ACCESS, REGIONAL CONNECTOR, and FlexRIDE services.

Customer Service:

RTC 4TH STREET STATION & RTC CENTENNIAL PLAZA buildings reopened:

  • Monday-Friday 8 A.M. – 12 P.M. & 1 P.M. – 5 P.M.
  • Closed Saturday, Sunday, and major holidays

RTC Customer Service assistance is available by phone Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. by calling 775-348-RIDE (348-7433), TTY 1-800-326-6868 for trip planning assistance or you have any questions about our transit services.

Free Rides to COVID-19 Vaccine Appointments:

The RTC is offering free RIDE, FlexRIDE, and ACCESS trips to vaccination locations. To get your free trip to any vaccination location, simply show the driver proof of your vaccine appointment when boarding. Proof can be provided by showing the driver your appointment confirmation in text, email, or printed formats.

These services work best for appointments with a pick-up and drop-off location and should not be used for drive-through vaccine appointments.

People without a vehicle receiving the vaccine at the Livestock Events Center must enter the vaccine site through the gate on Sutro Street (near the covered area where the vaccines are administered) and speak with the on-site volunteer to arrange for the vaccine.

  • RIDE:
    To plan your free RIDE trip on one of RTC’s buses, please visit rtcwashoe.com, or call RTC Customer Service at (775) 348-RIDE.
  • FlexRIDE:
    For FlexRIDE services within existing FlexRIDE areas, including Sparks/Spanish Springs, the North Valleys, or Somersett/Verdi, please download the free RTC Washoe FlexRIDE App, or call (775) 335-0035.
  • ACCESS:
    ACCESS-eligible clients can book a trip by calling (775) 348-5438. Must book 1-3 days in advance of the appointment.

There are other free or low-cost transportation options for people who live in areas not served by public transportation, including:

  • Washoe County Human Services’ Enhanced Mobility Program:
    The Washoe County Human Services’ Enhanced Mobility Program is offering free transportation to and from COVID vaccine appointments for seniors 60 years and older, Veterans, and people with disabilities, regardless of where a person lives. Please give 24-48 hours notice and call (775) 686-9424 or email HSA-SrTransportation@washoecounty.us.
    (This service is supported by funding from the Enhanced Mobility of Seniors and Individuals with Disabilities subaward from the RTC.)
  • Washoe Senior Ride Program:
    The Washoe Senior Ride program provides alternative, reliable, and affordable transportation to Washoe County residents who are 60 years and older, RTC ACCESS clients (any age) and Washoe County Veterans (any age). Each month, Washoe Senior Ride participants may purchase up to $60 worth of taxi fares for just $15. For details on how to apply for this program, please visit https://www.rtcwashoe.com/public-transportation/washoe-senior-ride/ or call RTC Customer Service at (775) 348-RIDE.
  • Washoe-Uber Rides Pilot Program:
    The Washoe-Uber Rides Pilot Program provides alternative, reliable, and affordable transportation to Washoe County residents who are 60 years and older, RTC ACCESS clients (any age) and Washoe County Veterans (any age). The RTC will pay 75% off of five rides per month, capped at $9 per ride. The other 25% of the fare, and any amount over $9, will be automatically charged to the user’s debit or credit card on file with the user’s Uber account. For details on how to apply for this program, please visit https://www.rtcwashoe.com/rtc-washoe-uber-rides-pilot-program/ or call RTC Customer Service at (775) 348-RIDE.

Other organizations may be offering free rides, too, including Uber and Lyft, which are offering free rides to vaccination appointments through July 4, 2021. 

Public Meetings:

The RTC will continue to provide virtual community-engagement opportunities, in addition to in-person meetings that may be scheduled as appropriate.

More Information:

The RTC will continue to monitor and implement safety protocols and recommendations as directed by the CDC, the TSA, Governor Sislolak, public health authorities, and local leaders to ensure the safety and well being of our employees, our transit and construction contractors, our customers, and our community. This situation is fluid and is subject to change as needed. Continue to visit rtcwashoe.com and follow RTC on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.

For regional COVID-19 information, please visit the Regional COVID-19 Information Website.

Disclaimer: 

Any safety comparison, information and guidance offered by RTC is based on studies and reports from international, national, state, county and regional health departments, and with the expectation that RTC patrons are following recommended general CDC principles.

Sources:
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/usingtransportation.html#PublicTransit

https://news.sky.com/story/coronavirus-why-public-transport-could-be-safer-than-wethought-12091657

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/us/coronavirus-us-cases.html

https://civicmeter.com/full-results-covid-19-survey-of-epidemiologists-on-reopening-risks-and-data-quality/