Transit Shutdown Only Lasts 36 Hours in Petersburg, Virginia
Wyatt Gordon reports on the ongoing effort at Petersburg Area Transit (PAT) to balance transit service with safety in the Tri-Cities region near Richmond in Virginia. PAT held the distinction of being the first transit agency in the nation to shut down service entirely, but the suspension of service only lasted a day.
"Despite taking a number of precautions that have become industry best practices during this pandemic such as eliminating fares, switching to backdoor boarding only, and separating bus operators from the public with plexiglass, PAT’s General Manager, Charles Koonce, still made the drastic decision to stop serving all riders as of last April 1 at 4:30 pm save for 12 people who rely on paratransit," reports Gordon.
Gordon provides a lot more detail on the thought process behind the decision to shut down the transit system, as well as the fallout from the decision for riders relying on the system for mobility.
Eventually, according to Gordon, state officials intervened and service reopened just 36 hours after it had been shut down.