July 23, 2020

The Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) of Washoe County’s transit contractor, Keolis, is reporting a second bus driver has tested positive for COVID-19.

The driver has not been at work since July 14.

The driver did not have any close-contact interactions with passengers within the guidelines of 15 minutes or more and less than six feet. All drivers are required to wear masks or face coverings when driving and there is a plastic barrier shield between drivers and passengers.

Personal responsibility is critical to protect one’s health and those around you. We urge everyone to be diligent during the pandemic. When out in public, and in the workplace, wash hands frequently, wear a face covering or mask, and follow social-distancing guidelines.

The health and safety of the community and RTC’s contracted frontline transit workers and transit riders are the RTC’s top priorities. The RTC and its contractors have been in full compliance of the Governor’s mask-wearing directive as of its effective date of June 26, 2020, and continue to adhere to previous directives issued. Masks are available on all RTC buses. During the seven-day period from July 7-13, 2020, RTC had 99.9% or better compliance with Governor Sisolak’s mask-wearing directive on transit.

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

Statement from the RTC’s transit contractor, Keolis:

With recent disclosures of positive tests cases among our workforce the care and safety of our employees and the riding public has always been important, but never more so than now. While positive cases across the United States are increasing, we have continued to build on our record of safety success during COVID-19 by instituting additional metrics as a measure of our commitment to the safety of our riders and our employees. This measure of transparency is our way of continuing to foster the trust and confidence our riders and employees have in RTC RIDE.

Keolis is committed to continue to provide safe and courteous service to the community and a healthy environment for our employees as we not only require them to wear a mask while at work, but also encourage our employees to be cognizant of their exposure to COVID-19 when off the clock.

Employee Wellbeing

  • All employees were granted additional paid leave for COVID-related situations. This includes taking care of children or a family member, self-quarantining, or any other issue.
  • Masks are required for all employees; hand sanitizer and gloves have been provided to them as well. Sanitizer and disinfecting wipes are available on all RIDE vehicles.
  • Temperature checks are being done on a voluntary basis within the employee group with the assistance of a contracted medical assistant on-site.
  • Seats on the bus near the operators have been appropriately marked in order to facilitate social distancing.
  • We instituted a screen between our operators, the fare box, and the general public as an initial measure while we explore optimal solutions for a hard shell-type solution.

Facility Cleaning and Disinfection

  • The facility and depot are cleaned and disinfected nightly with a new EPA-approved solution specifically manufactured to kill the coronavirus.
  • All traffic areas throughout the facility are cleaned routinely through the procurement of outside vendor support exclusively focused on COVID-19.
  • Social-distancing markers are placed on the floor in the hallways, notification of the same is posted on walls, and, the Governor’s directive is in full enforcement inside all facilities operated by Keolis
  • Regimented daily cleaning has been regularly instituted since COVID-19, in the event of a positive employee case within the facility or on RIDE vehicles.

Vehicle sanitization and cleaning

  • Vehicles are rotated out of service periodically through the course of the day and wiped down.
  • Any vehicle that has a potential positive case or an employee or rider exhibiting symptoms is immediately removed from service and quarantined. After two days, the vehicle is fully sanitized before returning to service.
  • A specialized fogger is in nightly use to provide a secondary disinfectant barrier for buses utilized throughout the day.

Community involvement

  • As Keolis has opened multiple networks around the world, we are assisting the RTC with best practices on how to ensure the safety of our community.
  • Free masks are available to the general public on all buses and at major hubs (4TH STREET STATION and CENTENNIAL PLAZA).
  • Keolis, in partnership with the RTC, provides mask dispenser units on buses subsequently allowing customers to self-dispense free masks.
  • Keolis has also installed hand-sanitization units mounted and placed on each bus.

Keolis’ operating team on the ground is in close concert with the RTC, has been in contact with the Governor’s office and will continue to adapt to this ever-changing situation. The one thing the general public and Keolis employees can have assurance on is that we, at Keolis, are not in the business of being complacent and there has never been a more critical time to be vigilant about our collective safekeeping.