Baton Rouge, LA — Thursday, March 19, 2020 — The Capital Area Transit System (CATS) continues to monitor reports and briefings from the mayor, governor, and president regarding COVID-19 precautions. The agency hears the growing concern for the spread of this pandemic and is working to actively maintain safe and clean conditions for both our operators and our customers.
"We have been working both internally and with other transit agencies and officials to determine the best and safest course of action over the coming days and weeks. We will continue to be diligent in our efforts to implement best practices as we navigate this unfamiliar time," said CATS CEO Bill Deville.
Based on meetings held with the agency’s Coronavirus Task Force as well as the leadership of the ATU Local 1546, the agency will undertake the following initiatives over the coming days:
- Reduce service to a “modified weekday” schedule that will be monitored daily for effectiveness:
- Rush hour service will be temporarily eliminated and buses will stop picking up customers at 9:30 p.m.
- This modified service will be effective Friday, March 20, 2020.
- Waive fares effective immediately; this will allow customers to enter and exit vehicles from the rear door only and reduce interactions between customers and operators, increasing social distance.
- Tape/rope off every other seat in the vehicles to enforce social distancing.
- The Customer Care Center has modified its hours to the following:
- CATS Terminal Customer Care window: Monday-Friday, 5:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.; CLOSED Saturday and Sunday.
- CATS Customer Care Call Center: Monday-Friday, 5:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, 6:00 a.m.-9:00 p.m.
CLEANING AND SANITATION EFFORTS:
- Operators are being provided with masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, etc. to ensure their safety while driving their routes.
- Continue sanitizing fleet with foggers containing disinfectant.
- Continue cleaning vehicles with wipes and other cleaners.
CATS will remain diligent in heeding directives given by officials and will continue providing the crucial service of connecting the public to the essential services throughout the community.
More information can be found at http://www.brcats.com/COVID-19 or on Facebook: CATSBR; Twitter: @BRTCATS; and Instagram: @btr_cats pages.