1-800-321- RTEC (7832) | Fax #: (606)-256-4319

Public Service Statement

Addressing the Coronavirus Pandemic (COVID-19)

Rural Transit Enterprises Coordinated, Inc. (RTEC) provides vital transportation services within Southeastern Kentucky.  With the likely continued spread of the COVID-19 novel coronavirus, we understand that people may be feeling anxiety and concern about the safety of public transit.  We take this very seriously. 

Our agency updated our Transit Agency Safety Plan with a supplemental Contagious Virus Response Plan and will all continue with our agency’s protocol for all types of infectious disease transmission for the safety our transit employees and passengers.   We are stressing daily disinfecting of all high-touch areas in all our buses and vehicles.  We want to ensure clean surfaces to assist our riders in having a safe journey to their destinations.  If any riders have concerns or observe a bus or vehicle that needs attention, we urge them to please alert a transit employee right away. 

Effective Friday, July 10, 2020 @ 5:00 PM!!!

Per the Governor’s Executive Order (2020-586) and effective Friday, July 10, 2020 at 5:00pm:

People shall cover their nose and mouth with a face covering when they are in the following situation that represent a high risk of COVID-19 transmission:

                b. While waiting for or riding on public transportation or paratransit, or while riding in a taxi, private care service, or ride-sharing vehicle, or driving any of the above while customers are present

The following are exempt per the order:

•             Children who are age 5 or younger;

•             Any person with a disability, or a physical or mental impairment, that prevents them from safely wearing a face covering;

•             Any person who is hearing impaired, or communicating with a person who is hearing impaired, where the ability to see the mouth is essential to communication;

•             Any person engaged in work that a state or federal regulator has concluded would make wearing a face covering a risk to their health or safety;

•             Any person who is obtaining a service that requires temporary removal of the face covering in order to perform the service;

•             Any person who is required to temporarily remove their face covering to confirm their identify or for security or screening purposes;

•             Any person who is giving a speech or broadcast to an audience and is able to maintain a safe distance of six feet from all individuals who are not members of the person’s household;

•             Any person who is engaged in a lawful activity where federal or state law prohibits wearing a face covering.

 

The CDC states that a person who has trouble breathing, is unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the face mask without assistance should not wear a face mask or cloth face covering.

Below are examples of a person with a disability, or a physical or mental impairment, who might not be able to wear a face mask:

• Individuals with asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), or other respiratory disabilities may not be able to wear a face mask because of difficulty in or impaired breathing. People with respiratory disabilities should consult their own medical professional for 

   advice about using face masks. The CDC also states that anyone who has trouble breathing should not wear a face mask.

• People with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), severe anxiety, or claustrophobia (an abnormal fear of being in enclosed or narrow places), may feel afraid or terrified when wearing a face mask. These individuals may not be able to stay calm or function when wearing

   a face mask.

• Some people with autism are sensitive to touch and texture. Covering the nose and mouth with fabric can cause sensory overload, feelings of panic, and extreme anxiety.

• A person who has cerebral palsy may have difficulty moving the small muscles in the hands, wrists, or fingers. Due to their limited mobility,  they may not be able to tie the strings or put the elastic loops of a face mask over the ears. This means that the individual may not be

   able to put on or remove a face mask without assistance.

• A person who uses mouth control devices such as a sip and puff to operate a wheelchair or assistive technology, or uses their mouth or tongue to use assistive ventilators will be unable to wear a mask.

Failure to follow the requirements is a violation of the Orders issued under KRS Chapter 39A and must result in a loss of access to a business’s services.

***Effective Monday, June 29, 2020! 

Approved by the Kentucky Department for Medicaid Services, Transport of Passengers Guidelines are required by all Transportation providers. 

Passengers must wear a cloth face covering while on board an RTEC bus. 

1. Passengers must maintain a minimum of three (3) feet of physical, social distancing between passengers seated in transit vehicles. This will be enforced by cordoning off seats and alternating seating positions as appropriate depending on the vehicle design, configuration and specifications. Six (6) feet social distancing between the driver and all passengers will be required, when applicable, during boarding and when assisting those who need assistance or in the securement of a mobility device.
2. Stagger seating.
3. Seat passengers from the same household together.
4. Leave the first seat empty either beside or behind the driver when applicable.

5. The maximum vehicle capacity must ensure a minimum of 3 feet of distance between the household group and other passengers.

6. Ensure physical distancing from any person who is not a member of one’s household.

***Effective Monday, May 11, 2020! 

Recommended by CDC and Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear, RTEC will be requiring all passengers to wear a face covering mask on RTEC buses. All drivers must wear mask when interacting with passengers and providing assistance when social distancing isn't possible

DIY Cloth Face Covering Instructions

RTEC Steps to be Safe & Healthy:

RTEC main lobby is now open to walk-in traffic beginning on Monday, June 8, 2020. Walk-in traffic are recommended to wear a face covering mask and keeping the 6ft social distance while being inside the RTEC main lobby.

RTEC is taking aggressive steps to safeguard the health and safety of their customers, staff and communities while attempting to continue the delivery of important services. RTEC is postponing in-person, non-essential events and meetings that are open to the general public, whether on or off site until further notice. Exceptions may be granted on a case-by-case basis.

RTEC will also limit county-to-county travel of its drivers and employees whenever possible. Vehicle Maintenance may be scheduled at local service shops and training conducted will be limited to small group sizes to help limit exposure from county-to-county travel.  Other measures may be taken to help mitigate risk of our vulnerable

 

Providing a safe transit journey requires a partnership with our riders.  Here’s what YOU can do to avoid catching COVID-19 or Similar Contagions:

1. Wash your hands often to remove germs.

2. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.

3. Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when sneezing or coughing (or cough into your elbow).

4. Eat healthy foods, drink plenty of water, and get enough sleep, exercise.

5. Avoid close contact with sick people.  Practice social distancing.  Avoid hand-shaking.

6. If you or your children get sick, stay home.  Contact your health care-professional for advise.

7. Follow Public Health Advice.  

 

Because of the gap in understanding about COVID-19, the situation is fluid and additional recommendations could follow, including the use of what the CDC describes as “social distancing” which means remaining out of congregate settings (such as stores, schools, large gatherings, etc.), and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet) from others when possible. 

 

RTEC realizes drivers provide additional door-to-door assistance to passengers as needed. Drivers should use Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) provided and request any additional PPE as needed.  RTEC Provides Drivers with PPE Equipment (Gloves, Mask/Face Shield, etc.) and sanitizing supplies to keep vans clean and sanitized. Office building areas are maintained and are equipped with Kleenex, hand sanitizer, and disinfectant materials to help reduce and eliminate germs, Flu and viral spreading.

 

Our top priorities are to continue service to the public and to keep our employees healthy and safe.  Thank you for partnering with us to help prevent the spread of illness. 

 

If you have questions or concerns about coronavirus, we encourage you to contact the local health authorities.  Further information on various diseases can be found on the CDC’s website: www.cdc.gov