A tribute to local bus drivers | PostIndependent.com

A tribute to local bus drivers

Transportation Responsibility & YouSabrina Harris

Imagine what it would be like to drive a 60-foot bus through Glenwood Springs’ heavy stop-and-go traffic, day in and day out, while dealing with passengers on board. Stopping to pick up and drop off passengers at each bus stop through town with vehicles impatiently waiting behind you. Our local bus drivers contribute a lot to reducing the traffic congestion in the Roaring Fork Valley by providing transportation for thousands of commuters each year. Driving a bus is a very stressful job, but our local transit drivers seem to accomplish it without a flaw. If you get the chance to sit behind one of these expert drivers, you can witness their experience and talent at work. A high percentage of drivers have worked at least 15 years with the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority and are very knowledgeable of their job. These multi-talented people deal with the full responsibility for their bus and passengers, and all on a strict time schedule. During the course of their shift, bus drivers must be alert at all times to prevent accidents, work in heavy traffic or in bad weather, exercise strong customer service skills, and avoid sudden stops or swerves that jar passengers while maintaining order on their bus. Just to operate the bus, drivers must hold a commercial driver’s license (CDL) with the appropriate endorsements from the State of Colorado. To qualify for a CDL, applicants must pass a knowledge test on rules and regulations and then demonstrate they can operate a bus safely in a skills test. Bus driver qualifications and standards are established by state and federal regulations. RFTA offers driver trainees four to five weeks of classroom and behind-the-wheel instruction. In the classroom, trainees learn Department of Transportation and company work rules, safety regulations, state and local driving regulations, and safe driving practices. They also learn to read schedules, determine fares, keep records, and how to deal courteously with passengers. I would like to take this opportunity to say thank our RFTA bus drivers on a job well done and let them know how much we appreciate them. What would we do without you? Let your local bus drivers know how much you appreciate them. Tell them thanks for making a difference in our community!Construction UpdateThe city of Glenwood Springs and its contractor, Frontier Paving, will be crack sealing Blake Avenue from Seventh Street to 23rd Street. Work will start at 9 a.m. and end by 4 p.m. Wednesday, May 10, and Thursday, May 11. Traffic will be controlled by flaggers and will be single-lane through the work zone for safety. Delays will be short while the traffic lanes are alternated by the flaggers. We appreciate your cooperation during this street maintenance project.The West Glenwood park-and-ride has been reopened to the public. Paving and striping of the parking lot has been completed, and the sidewalk is nearly completed. Final work on landscaping and amenities (shelter, bike rack) still needs to be completed.The overlay along Wulfsohn Drive at the park-and-ride is complete, except for adjusting two water valves.Work should begin on the north roundabout landscaping approximately May 22.Questions regarding these projects may be directed to the city engineering department at 384-6435.Sabrina Harris is the transportation manager for Glenwood Springs.

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