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PSTA Announces Participation in Nationwide Public Transportation Industry “Health and Safety Commitments” Program

September 18, 2020 


PSTA Announces Participation in Nationwide Public Transportation Industry “Health and Safety Commitments” Program
PSTA joins over 100 public transit agencies across the country in signing on to the program 


St. Petersburg, Fla –The Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) announced today that it has joined the American Public Transportation Association’s (APTA) “Health and Safety Commitments Program,” the public transportation industry’s overarching pledge to passengers that public transit systems are taking all the necessary measures to operate safely as the nation recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic. PSTA takes great pride in that many of the efforts below have been ongoing since the pandemic began. This pledge reaffirms our commitment to our community.  


The health and safety of passengers and operators is the most important priority for PSTA. Since the beginning of the pandemic, PSTA has worked tirelessly to keep riders safe from infection from the coronavirus. By signing on to the APTA Health and Safety Commitments Program with more than 100 public transit systems, PSTA and the public transit industry are actively working to instill confidence in riders that it’s committed to protecting their health and safety.


The Program was developed after asking transit users from across the country what measures would make them feel more confident riding public transportation amid concerns about COVID-19. From this research, the industry identified four key areas that transit systems need to address to earn riders’ confidence: 

  • Following public health guidelines from official sources 
  • Cleaning and disinfecting transit vehicles frequently and requiring face coverings and other protections 
  • Keeping passengers informed and empowered to choose the safest times and routes to ride 
  • Putting health first by requiring riders and employees to avoid public transit if they have been exposed to COVID-19 or feel ill 


PSTA has pledged to meet these commitments by creating specific policies that are effective for our system, our riders, and our community. A key component of the Health and Safety Commitments Program is the shared responsibility of our system and our riders to follow the guidelines. Riders rely on us to follow these commitments, and PSTA relies on riders to protect themselves and other customers.  


“We know, and take it very seriously, that we are a lifeline for many to get to their jobs, medical appointments, and even the grocery store,” said Brad Miller, Chief Executive Officer of PSTA. “Our commitment to this program will ensure our riders, as well as our employees, that we will do all that we can to make certain that they are safe will using our service.”


PSTA has been committed to continually addressing and implementing pillars of the Program. Current and ongoing actions include:   

  • Requiring all passengers to wear masks while using PSTA services 
  • Enforcing all who are able to use rear-door boarding 
  • Limiting passengers on buses 
  • Not charging fares to reduce congestion at farebox 
  • Implementing social distancing while on buses 


“This program is a commitment that this industry is making to all those we serve now and to those who we look forward to serving,” said Nuria I. Fernandez, APTA Chair, and General Manager and CEO of Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority. “Public transportation is and will be vital to the social and economic recovery of our nation. But getting there requires us to win back our ridership and encourage new riders to view public transit as a preferred mobility choice. We believe this commitment program will help do this.” 


“The program being launched today is the public transportation industry’s pledge to promote sensible policies and practices designed to keep transit users and transit employees safe during the COVID-19 crisis,” said APTA President and CEO Paul P. Skoutelas. “It is a logical extension of the innovation and commitment we have been demonstrating for the past several months – and it makes the need for at least $32 billion in additional emergency funding that much more urgent and critical.” 




Stephanie Weaver

PSTA Communications & Public Relations Manager

O: (727) 540-1853 | C: (727) 249-6542


PSTA: The Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority is the public transit provider for Pinellas County, providing more than 12.1 million rides per year. PSTA operates 40 bus and trolley routes with a fleet of 210 vehicles.