It will look at information provided by OTRB operators as to requests for accessible bus service, frequency of lift use, ability to meet 48-hour requests, cost and service impacts, complaints, and general ridership information.
So, if we want reliable OTRB services, we need to start riding those vehicles
DOT has published a guide to its regulations for small OTRB operators, but most of the information is helpful to passengers, too.
ADA requires DOT to issue regulations requiring OTRB accessibility.
At rest or intermediate stops at which passengers may leave the bus to use facilities, OTRB companies must provide passengers with disabilities time and assistance needed to leave and re-enter the vehicle, whether or not the bus is accessible.
If a passenger requests accessible service at least 48 hours in advance and an OTRB company fails to provide service complying with this rule, the company must pay compensation to the passenger within seven days.
DOT plans to gather information from OTRB operators such as the number of times a disabled passenger used a lift, the number of advanced notice trips taken by disabled passengers, the number of times compensation was paid, the number of new buses purchased or leased, and how many of the new buses were accessible.
It is more important than ever that passengers with disabilities file written complaints (letters are acceptable) whenever OTRB operators fail to comply with accessibility requirements.
At present, to board an OTRB, most individuals who use wheelchairs or other wheeled mobility-aids must leave the aid and be carried to the bus seat.
These include level-change devices (wheelchair lifts or ramps) that travel with the OTRB or are based at the station.
ADA prohibits DOT from requiring an accessible rest room aboard an OTRB if it results in the loss of seating capacity.
Full implementation of requirements for OTRB transportation systems will take approximately 20 years, as accessible buses replace current stock.