Details about Paratransit
Driver and Dispatch Staff Responsibilities
WTA drivers are friendly, responsible people with safe driving records and professional training in quality customer care. In addition, our drivers pass State Patrol criminal checks and ongoing drug and alcohol screening. Our drivers are also trained in First Aid, CPR and Disability Awareness.
We are committed to:
- Safe, friendly and reliable transportation
- Clean, well-maintained vehicles and well trained drivers
- Prompt and thoughtful responses to your questions and concerns
- Consideration for your special needs
- Passenger Responsibilities
As a passenger, you have responsibilities too. Appropriate use and realistic expectations allow us to provide the best service to all users.
1) Be ready at least one hour before your scheduled arrival time at your destination. If the Driver arrives and you are not ready, the Driver can wait NO MORE THAN five minutes.
2) Make sure the address of your residence is clearly visible from the street.
3) The pick-up area at your house needs to be safe and easy to access. We require an obstruction-free approach and sufficient turn-around area for our vehicles. Otherwise, we may need to pick you up and drop you off on the street.
4) If you have difficulty traveling independently, or if you need more than door-to-door service, we suggest you ask an attendant or companion to accompany you. Many riders find having an attendant accompany them helps them get around more easily.
5) Drivers will enter buildings or residences only with permission from Dispatch when there are no alternatives available and no other riders are on board.
6) Please tell the Customer Service Representative (on the phone) where you will wait for your return trip.
7) Please notify us of any changes in your address or assistance needs at least the day before your next ride so we can arrange our schedules and know where to pick you up.
1. Just as we treat you with courtesy, we expect you to treat our Drivers, Customer Service Representatives, Dispatchers and other Riders with consideration. Fighting, throwing things, pushing, shouting, hitting, spitting, and using abusive language are considered serious service disruptions and are not allowed. Abusive language on the telephone is also prohibited. Some disruptions are grounds for immediate suspension of service.
2. Personal hygiene must meet acceptable standards for the comfort and safety of all.
3. All riders must comply with safety rules established in Washington State Law (Title 9.91.025) which forbids smoking, eating or drinking, spitting, the playing of radios or other noisy equipment, possession of firearms, weaponry, and hazardous chemicals or acid on public transit vehicles.
Safety Belts and Wheelchair Securements
All passengers must use the safety belts provided, including passengers in wheelchairs. Drivers are trained in the professional use of wheelchair securements, which much also be used.
For children under the age of three, accompanying adults must provide an approved child car seats. If a child over the age of three cannot be secured by a regular safety belt, an approved child car seat must be provided.
Passengers with Mobility Aids, Wheelchairs, or Life Support Equipment
If you use a mobility aid or wheelchair, please keep it in proper working condition. If a Driver believes you cannot be safely transported in your wheelchair, she or he will tell you so, and we may not be able to transport you.
Your wheelchair may be considered unsafe if:
- The wheels or other parts are loose or dangerous.
- The tires are flat.
- One or both brakes do not hold the wheels securely.
- The footrests are missing.
- The battery on an electric wheelchair has a very low charge. Let us know if you are having problems with your mobility aid.
- Please use a positioning belt to insure your stability in your chair.
- If you use a manual wheelchair, please bring an attendant if you require assistance over rough terrain or steep slopes, and if the combined weight of you and your wheelchair exceeds 350 lbs. These conditions present a safety hazard to you, other passengers, the driver and the vehicle.
- Let us know if your wheelchair is oversized. Our lifts can accommodate wheelchairs up to 30" wide, 48" long and up to 600 lbs. in weight when occupied. If you and your wheelchair exceed these dimensions and weight, we will do our best to serve you but we may not be able to accommodate you.
- If you use a wheelchair and have more than one step at your residence or destination, you will need to arrange for someone to assist you up and down the steps. Our Drivers will assist you up or down one step, but cannot assist with more than one step by themselves.
- You may ride a power scooter on our vehicles. However, you may want to transfer into a seat while riding. We will secure your scooter, and assist you to a seat if you wish.
- We do transport riders who use portable medical equipment, such as portable oxygen, respirators, etc. However, if your equipment is unwieldy in size or dimension, and you are not able to carry it or operate it independently, we expect someone to accompany you.
- Drivers cannot safely assist you onto the vehicle and carry equipment at the same time, nor can they administer oxygen or operate any other life support equipment.
- You must be able to hold your equipment securely, or we must be able to secure it on the vehicle. We will not transport equipment that is not safely secured.
Because Paratransit is a “grouped ride” service and we cannot promise trips directly to your destination. Therefore,
- If you are a diabetic, please bring a small snack with you in case you have to travel a long time.
- If you travel with oxygen, please be sure your supply will last until we get you back home.
- If your wheelchair, mobility, or life support equipment is battery-powered, please make sure it has a sufficient charge to last throughout your traveling day.
- If you are sensitive to weather conditions, please dress appropriately.
Medical Emergencies...Call 911!
If you suffer a trauma or fall at home and need immediate help, please call 911! A medical professional's permission may be required before we transport you. WTA Drivers are NOT paramedics. We may refuse transport to riders who appear to need medical care en route.
Children age six and under must be accompanied by an adult on WTA vehicles.
Children must be secured safety belts or safety seats appropriate to the age or weight of the child. We do not provide car seats. The child's parent or guardian is responsible for providing a car seat compatible with safety belts on WTA vehicles.
Working with Caregivers and Agencies
WTA will communicate with a passenger’s caregiver or appropriate authorities to insure that service is used in accordance with WTA policies, with the health and well-being of all riders in mind.
Use of Taxi Services
Occasionally, we use local taxi companies to provide trips. Here are a few details about your ride by taxi:
1) Taxi drivers will have the information to identify you and your trip.
2) There is no charge (other than your regular fare) when you ride WTA-initiated taxi service.
3) Riders should not tip the taxi drivers.
4) WTA Dispatch must authorize the use of the taxi. Do not call for the taxi service yourself, unless you are prepared to pay for it!
5) Taxi trips are only used to allow Dispatchers to make the best use of our limited Drivers and vehicles. We will not accept trip requests specifically for taxis.
The taxi service provider is responsible for training their drivers to handle passengers' special needs according to our high standards for quality service. Please contact us immediately if you experience service that does not meet these standards.
If You Move Away
Please notify us at (360) 733-1144 if you move or if you no longer need the service.
Please note: Our website provides a summary of our policies, Washington State Law and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. This should not be construed as the full and complete explanation or content of WTA policies, local, State and Federal Law. Actual WTA policies, local, State and Federal Laws take precedence.