RTC makes improvements while bus use lower; new options await riders

Local News

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Catching the bus could feel like a new experience after changes made during the pandemic.

While the Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) never stopped service, it was an opportunity to take advantage of stay-at-home orders and “pauses” through COVID-19. Federal grants and higher attention to sanitation has produced some changes that you’ll notice.

Federal guidelines for public transportation mean you’ll still need to wear a mask and observe social distancing. But along with those rules, you’ll have new technology working to make your ride smoother:

  • Contactless Cash Payment — The RTC offers riders a convenient and contactless option to purchase bus passes with cash. Using the RTC smartphone app, rideRTC, customers who choose not to use a credit or debit card may now add funds to their rideRTC account by pre-loading cash at nearly 350 locations valleywide. Cash-in payment platforms accept the cash payment and scan a barcode from the user’s rideRTC app. Customers then have the cash deposited to buy and store RTC bus passes that they can then use at their convenience.
  • Air Ion Cleaners — New air ion cleaners are on-board equipment that eliminates airborne germs and viruses while RTC vehicles are on the road. The air ion cleaners are designed to improve indoor air quality – producing positive and negative ions that suppress dust, control various odors, and reduce airborne contaminants. A video of the air ion cleaners can be viewed here.
  • Micro-Bacterial Shields — As an additional layer of protection for riders, AEGIS micro-bacterial shields are being applied to seats and high-touch surfaces on all new transit vehicles to eliminate bacteria and mold for up to 1 year on most surfaces. The micro-bacterial shields can protect vehicles from odors, extend fabric life and make surfaces easier to clean. The micro-bacterial shield bonds to fibers in the vehicle, allowing for bacteria to attract to the treated fibers – puncturing the bacteria’s membrane and destroying it on contact.

“As our community phases out previous COVID-19 restrictions, the health and safety of our riders will always be top of mind,” said M.J. Maynard, RTC chief executive officer.

“The addition of new technologies to our transit operations will not only continue to help protect our transit and paratransit riders from germs and viruses, but will allow passengers that rely on transit to feel safe and comfortable riding the bus,” Maynard said.

The RTC’s 14-Point Safety Plan:

For more information on current COVID-19 precautions and technologies in place, visit rtcsnv.com/coronavirus

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