Operator safety isn’t just high priority for the MPTA and Missouri transit providers that are pushing for priority testing for transit operators. Instead, operator safety is a national issue, with several organizations coming together to implore the White House to strengthen federal coordination to provide personal protective equipment (PPE) for transit workers.
Protective gear for transit workers will have a strong multiplier effect, since reducing risk will increase the availability of the transit workforce, leading to greater provision of transit service, less crowding on transit vehicles, and lower rates of transmission among transit riders and thus the general population.
A recent success in Greene County Missouri, at the behest of City Utilities in Springfield, local health officials have agreed to increase priority testing for transit professionals in accordance with CDC priority testing guidelines (Priority 3). The priority testing allows for quicker access to testing for providers and operators.
“Quicker results on the tests could help to alleviate large portions of operators from being quarantined. This action will enhance each provider’s current disease mitigation strategy and improve the ability to ensure operators’ health and workforce numbers to mitigate service disruptions throughout the state,” said Kim Cella, MPTA Executive Director.
Check out the MPTA COVID-19 Update Center for the most current information from around the state.