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Accessibility Accessible Fixed Route Bus Service

River Valley Transit has a fully accessible fleet of twenty-eight (28) transit vehicles in its active fleet. Therefore, accessible fixed-route bus service is available from 5:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., Monday through Saturday. "Super Nightline" service operates from 6:30 p.m. to 11:45 p.m. utilizing two buses.

Wheelchair Fares

The fare for a trip charged a disabled person using an accessible bus is no higher than the fare charged other users. In general, a person may ride for $1.00 during the off-peak hours by presenting a Medicare card to the Operator, or by obtaining a "Reduced Fare Transit Identification Card.” Applicants must have a physician or representative of a social service agency certify to their disability.

Wheelchair Lift / Ramp Deployment

It is River Valley Transit policy that persons with disabilities are permitted to board or alight at any bus stop along the route; unless the lift/ramp cannot be deployed, the lift/ramp would be damaged if deployed, or temporary conditions preclude use. Temporary conditions cannot be the result of River Valley Transit action. Temporary condition must preclude safe disembarkment by all passengers.

Wheelchair Boarding a Lift Bus
  • Please be at your bus stop at least five minutes before the time your bus is scheduled to arrive.

  • When the bus arrives, please wait approximately five feet, or a reasonable safe distance, away from the door so that the lift can be deployed.

  • When the lift is fully deployed, move your wheelchair onto the platform BACKWARDS, unless otherwise authorized. LOCK YOUR BRAKES, IF YOU ARE USING A MOTORIZED WHEELCHAIR, SHUT OFF THE POWER TO CONTROL.

  • When the lift platform is level with the bus floor, back onto the bus, give the correct fare to the Operator and tell the Operator your destination.

  • If you are using a motorized wheelchair and need the Operator to assist you, please disengage your clutch, Continue to one of the two tie-down locations. Be careful moving between passengers in the aisle.

Wheelchair Securing Your Wheelchair

River Valley Transit provides two types of wheelchair tie-downs on its lift buses in order to better accommodate the wide range of wheelchairs in use today. One type utilizes a combination claw clamp and seat belt while the other uses a belt securement system.

  • To use the clamp tie-down, you must maneuver one LARGE rear wheel into the claw clamp. The clamp will close automatically when your wheel strikes the impact plate at the rear of the clamp. If the clamp does not close, move your wheelchair forward a few inches and back into the clamp more forcefully. When properly secured, the prongs of the claw clamp should overlap. Next, the Operator will pull the seat belt completely around you and your wheelchair, if requested; by pulling the belt out straight it should come out far enough to reach around you.
  • To use the belt securement system, maneuver your wheelchair into the tie-down area. The tie-down consists of three (3) belts: two (2) belts to secure the rear of your chair, two (2) straps to secure the front of your chair, and one belt which functions as a seat belt/shoulder harness to be fastened around you and your wheelchair.
Wheelchair Exiting the Bus
  • Once the bus has stopped, the Operator will release the seat belt and the claw clamp or belt tie-downs and move to the rear door where the lift is located. The claw clap is released by pushing down on the knob behind the clamp, and the belt tie-downs are released by pressing the clasp button.

  • Wait until the lift platform is level with the bus floor. Move FORWARD onto the platform. If you are using a motorized wheelchair and need the Operator to assist, leave the clutch disengaged. When all four wheels are on the platform, LOCK YOUR BRAKES, IF YOU ARE USING A MOTORIZED WHEELCHAIR, SHUT OFF POWER TO CONTROL.

  • When the platform has reached the ground and the restraint has dropped, release your brakes and move off the platform. If you are using a motorized wheelchair, re-engage your clutch and turn power 'on'.

    It is River Valley Transit policy to allow adequate time for the boarding and alighting of persons with disabilities. No time limit is currently established.

Wheelchair Traveling Companion Policy

If you require assistance onto the lift platform from outside the bus, a traveling companion is recommended. River Valley Transit's present policy is to charge no fare for companions of persons with disabilities. It is generally felt that companions are providing a service by allowing persons with disabilities to use fixed route transit service.

Wheelchair Kneelers

All River Valley Transit vehicles have a 'kneeling' feature. The kneeler lowers the right front corner of the bus four (4") inches closer to the sidewalk or street to make it easier for people who have trouble climbing stairs to get on and off the bus.
If you have any difficulty reaching the bus stair, just ask the Operator to lower the kneeler for you. If assistance is required, the operators are to assist the passenger with boarding and/or alighting the bus.

Wheelchair Accommodating Other Mobility Devices and Life Support Equipment

In accordance with ADA regulations, all riders will be permitted to travel with service animals trained to assist them. Service animals include guide dogs and other animals that provide aid to persons with mobility impairments.

Persons will also be permitted to travel with respirators, portable oxygen and other life support equipment. Travel with this equipment will only be denied if it violates rules concerning the transportation of hazardous materials.

In general, the transport of common types of portable life support equipment is not prohibited. Cylinders of oxygen used by passengers for health reasons, for example, are not subject to the Hazardous Materials Regulations.

Wheelchair Announcement On Vehicles

River Valley Transit has posted signs on all the buses informing all passengers of our intent to comply with the ADA requirement to announce stops at major transfer points, major intersections/destination points, intervals along the routes, and at stops requested by the passengers.

RVT's transit vehicles are equipped with voice annunciators that are activated by the operator or have fully-automated voice annunciators that work with GPS to automatically announce bus stops. Announcements are made utilizing the PA system when the voice annunciator system is not working. All transit vehicles also automatically announces the route name when the doors open.

Wheelchair Securing Your Wheelchair

In accordance with the regulations, River Valley Transit will provide service to all "common wheelchairs" and their users. A common wheelchair is a wheelchair that does not exceed 30 inches in width and 48 inches in length measured two inches above the ground, and does not weigh more than 600 pounds when occupied. Wheelchairs are defined to include three-wheeled and four-wheeled mobility aids. Three-wheeled "scooters" and other non-traditional designs will be transported.

Use of the securement system on River Valley Transit vehicles will be required as a condition of receiving service. Complementary paratransit service may be denied on the grounds that a mobility device cannot be secured to River Valley Transit satisfaction.

When transporting users of three-wheeled wheelchairs or other mobility devices, River Valley Transit can suggest that the passenger transfer into a bus seat. The rider, in this case, has the final decision as to whether a transfer is appropriate given their particular disability.

As the regulations require, a person who cannot enter the vehicle using the stairs, but who does not use a wheelchair, will be allowed to enter the vehicle using the lift (except for bus 601).

River Valley Transit has twenty-four (24) ramp accessible buses, which allows passengers to walk up the ramp instead of steps.

Wheelchair Training

Operators have been thoroughly trained in the use of the accessibility features of the buses (i.e., wheelchair lifts, ramps, tie-downs, etc.) and in awareness of the needs of passengers with disabilities.

River Valley Transit will continue its sensitivity program to train our Operators on the various needs of persons with disabilities. This training establishes some empathy on the part of the Operators toward disabled passengers and provides instruction in certain types of passenger assistance. Other training features include: passenger assistance techniques, Cardio-Pulmonary-Resuscitation (CPR) and emergency cardiac care. 

Wheelchair Maintenance Of Accessible Features

A top priority of River Valley Transit's accessible service is the maintenance of the lift equipment. The mechanics have been properly trained on the maintenance of all accessible buses before they were put into service. As part of the overall maintenance program, procedures have been established to ensure the proper operating condition of all equipment. These procedures are used to ensure that the lifts are put back in service with little delay. Every effort is made to repair lifts before the next day of service. In addition, River Valley Transit keeps a substantial inventory of parts pertaining to accessible features on the buses to prevent any unnecessary downtime.

Wheelchair ADA Complementary Paratransit Service ( River Valley Transit Plus )

The ADA regulations require public entities operating fixed route transportation service to provide paratransit as a complement to their fixed route service. This paratransit service, intended for people who cannot use accessible fixed route transportation, must be comparable to the fixed route system in forms of coverage and level of service. This service has to be provided during the same days and hours as fixed route service with comparable fares. Service has to be provided to locations within 3/4 of a mile of the River Valley Transit routes.

River Valley Transit Plus, WBT's ADA paratransit service, was initiated in November 1992, making complementary paratransit service available to ADA eligible clients. In November 1996, River Valley Transit Plus obtained full compliance with all six ADA paratransit service requirements. River Valley Transit Plus service is available from 5:30 A.M. to 11:45 P.M., Monday through Saturday.

Responsibility for service delivery has been contracted with STEP, Inc., which operates a larger shared ride paratransit service in the area. WBT certifies clients as eligible for the paratransit service, but STEP is responsible for accepting reservations and providing transportation to meet trip requests. The ADA paratransit service fare, which is currently $4.00, is twice the River Valley Transit base fare.

 


River Valley Transit Plus 
 

 

River Valley Transit Plus is operated by River Valley Transit (RVT) in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA). The procedures and regulations in this brochure have been established to assure that ADA eligible passengers are afforded accessible, reliable paratransit service.

1. Eligibility

RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS provides complementary paratransit services for individuals with disabilities that prevent them from using the fixed route buses. Disabled riders are eligible for RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS if their disability makes it impossible to board buses or to navigate through the bus system because of a physical or mental impairment. Additionally, those with a specific disability related condition which interacts with architectural or environmental
barriers to prevent travel to and from bus stops may also be eligible. The impairment must make it impossible to use buses, rather than more difficult than for those without the impairment. In order to use this service, individuals must first be certified as “ADA eligible clients” by the certification process.
Use of RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS may be approved only for certain trips, depending on the conditions under which disabled applicants can use buses. If eligibility is approved for certain trips only, applicants will be notified of the limitations on the use of RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS upon approval.

2. Certification Process

Individuals must be certified as ADA eligible before they can utilize RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS paratransit service. Applications are available from RVT and various agencies. It is important to understand that certification of eligibility for this service rests upon a functional evaluation of clients’ impairments which prevent them from using the regular transit system rather than a medical diagnosis of the underlying condition. RVT’s process for determining ADA eligibility will generally rely on self-certification of a person’s functional disabilities, supplemented by additional documentation only as required to effectively evaluate and classify a specific impairment. In some cases, RVT will need to contact the applicant or an appropriate agency or other sources to verify or expand upon the information provided if a particular claim appears to be less than fully supported by the information provided in the application. RVT will make the determination of whether or not the applicant is authorized to utilize the RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS as an ADA eligible client and will notify individuals in writing as to this determination within twenty-one (21) days of the submission of a properly completed application. If a determination on eligibility is not made within twenty-one (21) days from the date of application, the applicant may use RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS until such a determination is completed. If the determination is that the individual is ineligible for RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS paratransit service, RVT will state the reasons for this decision. In such cases, applicants will have the right to appeal this decision.

3. Appeals Process

The appeals process is available to any individual who has been denied eligibility for RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS paratransit service. Eligible clients who have had limitations placed on the trips they can make with RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS or whose eligibility has been suspended for missing more than three (3) reserved trips in a six-month period can also use this appeals process. A written appeal must be received by RVT’s Planning Manager within sixty (60) days of the date of such written notice.

4. Service Area

The RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS paratransit service will be available for all trip requests with origin and destination within a service area defined around the route network used by the fixed route bus system. Basically, this service area is defined by three-quarters of a mile from any of RVT’s bus routes and within the municipalities participating in RVT’s fixed route system. Specifically, the paratransit service areas consist of the City of Williamsport; Boroughs of Duboistown, Hughesville, Jersey Shore, Montgomery, Montoursville, Muncy and South Williamsport; Townships of Armstrong, Clinton, Fairfield, Loyalsock, Muncy, Muncy Creek, Old Lycoming, Piatt, Porter, Wolf and Woodward which lie within three-quarters of a mile of one of RVT’s routes. Paratransit service will not be extended to origins or destinations beyond this area or to adjacent municipalities which do not participate in the bus system. A map showing the specific service area is available from RVT.

5. Hours and Dates of Service

RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS paratransit service will be available from 5:30 AM until 11:45 PM Monday through Saturday. No service will be provided on New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, or Christmas Day.

6. Advanced Reservation Requirements

An advance reservation is required for each one-way trip on RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS, including return trips and any stops you intend to make along the way. Advance reservations may be made fourteen (14) days prior to the day of travel, but not later than the day prior to travel. To make a reservation, you must call STEP at 323-7575 between 8:30 AM and 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday or between 9:00AM and 2:00 PM on Saturdays. Next day service will be provided if the trip is requested between hours above the day before the trip is to be scheduled. If you are unable to make a trip at a time previously reserved, you should follow the procedures under CHANGES, CANCELATIONS, AND DELAYS.

7. Scheduling

RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS service is operated by STEP Inc., under contract with RVT. Trips are grouped into shared rides on STEP vehicles. Thus, your pick-up time may be scheduled within one hour of the requested time, taking your scheduled activity into account when necessary. You will be notified of the scheduled pick-up time when you make your reservation. You will be picked up within fifteen (15) minutes of the scheduled time. Please be ready to board the vehicle when it arrives. If possible, you should give the dispatcher a telephone number where you can be notified of any unforeseen delays in meeting your scheduled pick-up. Please be prepared for delays in your pick-up time or the need for additional travel time during snow storms or other unusual conditions.

8. Changes, Cancelations, and Delays

Once a reservation is made, your are expected to travel to and from the points and at the times scheduled.
RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS vehicles will only wait five (5) minutes beyond the scheduled pick-up time or the time the vehicle arrives, whichever is later. This regulation is enforced to protect other passengers from unnecessary delays. IF YOU ARE GOING TO BE DELAYED, you must contact STEP at least one (1) hour before the scheduled pick-up time. The dispatcher will arrange a new pick-up at the next available time. Such re-scheduling may delay your pick-up significantly, depending on the number of other trips already scheduled for the day, but you are guaranteed that you will be picked up as soon as possible. IF YOU WANT TO CANCEL a reserved trip, you must notify STEP at least one (1) hour prior to your scheduled pick-up time.
If you do not contact STEP about the delay or cancelation, and the vehicle leaves after the five (5) minute waiting period, you will be considered a “NO-SHOW,” and your ride will be canceled. RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS does not guarantee that “NO-SHOWS” will be rescheduled.

9. “No Show” Policy

Individuals who demonstrate a consistent pattern of missing scheduled paratransit trips, or “NO-SHOWS,” may temporarily lose their eligibility. You will be considered a “NO-SHOW” if you fail to notify STEP that you will not be available for your scheduled pick-up either due to a delay or cancellation. RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS drivers note whenever a “NO-SHOW” occurs; two (2) such occurrences within a six (6) month period will result in a written reminder of this policy. With a third (3) occurrence within a six (6) month period, you may lose your eligibility for CITY BUS PLUS for a period of one month. “NO- SHOW” incidents are removed from your record after such suspension or six (6) months after their occurrence. It is important to note that whenever you are considered a “NO-SHOW,” any other trips reserved for later that day will be automatically canceled unless you notify STEP at least one (1) hour before the other scheduled trip(s).

10. Vehicles

Because of the need to provide transportation to many passengers with a limited number of vehicles, it is not possible to honor requests for specific vehicles, unless you have physical limitations which require it. Please inform the dispatcher of any such requirements such as a lift-equipped van.

11. Fares

Fares are required for each trip on RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS. Each stop that you make is counted as one trip. The fare for eligible ADA clients is twice the RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT base fare (currently $4.00/one-way trip). Clients will pay the fare to the driver of the van at the time the trip is made. Drivers do not make change. On trips made by eligible ADA clients who are authorized to be accompanied by a personal care attendant, no fare will be charged for the personal care attendant.

12. Personal Care Attendants and Traveling Companions

Disabled passengers who require a personal care attendant on each trip to board or ride RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS vehicles must request approval to do so when applying for the program (See Certification Process). If approved, the personal care attendant must accompany the passenger on every trip. No fare will be charged to authorized personal care attendants.
In addition, ADA clients may be accompanied by one traveling companion other than the personal care attendant, as long as the companion has the same origin and destination as the ADA eligible client. In these instances, the companion will be charged the basic ($4.00) fare for each one-way trip. If you plan to have a traveling companion, you must notify the STEP dispatcher when scheduling your trip. If no reservation is made for the companion, service will not be provided. It is important to note that RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS service will provide “curb-to-curb” service. This means that while drivers will be able to help clients board and disembark from the vehicle, they cannot be responsible for escorting passengers to their destination.
Passengers must be physically and medically able to travel. RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS is not designed as an ambulance for paramedical service, or to handle medical emergencies. Drivers are not trained to assist passengers in such cases. RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS reserves the right to refuse to transport a passenger whose overall physical condition makes travel aboard RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS vehicles unsafe.

13. Special Consideration for Those Using Wheelchairs

Safety concerns require that wheelchairs not be altered through the removal of structural equipment such as footrest or armrest, except where authorized in writing by a physician and with the prior approval of RVT. Wheelchairs must be structurally sound and in good working condition. RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS reserves the right to refuse transportation to passengers whose wheelchairs have loose or worn parts or whose wheelchairs have had equipment removed or altered in such a way that wheelchair stability or operation is affected

14. Visitors

Visitors showing documentation from another transit authority certifying their eligibility for paratransit under the Americans with Disabilities Act may use RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS by showing such documentation. Visitors without such documentation must notify RVT of their disability and residence to receive approval to use RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS. Visitors are only eligible for RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS for a period of twenty-one (21) calendar days from the first date that the service is used; after twenty-one (21) days, service will be denied until and unless the visitor completes the application procedure and is determined to be eligible for paratransit. If a visitor plans to use RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS paratransit service in excess of twenty-one (21) days in a one-year period, it will be required that he or she apply for eligibility locally. Persons with disabilities visiting the Lycoming County should contact RVT for information on using RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS during their stay here.

15. Other Programs of Interest to River Valley Transit Plus Patrons

All persons 65 or over are eligible for this transportation at a reduced rate under the State’s shared ride program. Please contact STEP at 323-7575 or further information. Persons between 60 - 65 who sign up with the Bi-County Office of the Aging may be eligible for shared ride transportation partially funded by the Area Agency on Aging. Please contact the Bi-County Office of the Agency at 323-3096 for further information. Persons of any age may be eligible for the medical assistance transportation program funded by the Department of Public Welfare. Please contact STEP at 323-7575 for further information. Persons with a disability who live outside RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS service area ( See Section 4 ) or request trips outside the RIVER VALLEY TRANSIT PLUS hours and dates of service ( See Section 5 ) may be eligible for transportation services through the Persons with Disabilities (PWD) Program. Please call STEP at 323-7575 for further details.

16. Additional Information
Additional information is available upon request from the River Valley Transit . William E. Nichols, Jr., General Manager, or Kevin W. Kilpatrick, Special Services Manager, are available to answer questions about service and program policies as well as compliments or complaints.
 

River Valley Transit
1500 West Third Street Williamsport,
PA 17701 (570)-326-2500 (voice) - (570)327-7506 (TDD)
COMPLEMENTARY PARA TRANSIT SERVICE

 
 

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