DTA Looking to Increase Services

"When we go back to our higher level service we will be at 83 percent or about 48 buses."

DULUTH, Minn. – “We made significant changes to our operations and the way we do business,” Duluth Transit Authority General Manager, Phil Pumphrey says.

Since March, the Duluth Transit Authority has reduced services to just 24 buses running at only 43 percent of what is normal.

“When we go back to our higher level service we will be at 83 percent or about 48 buses,” Pumphrey says.

That service increase will happen early next week, and the DTA has hired two cleaners to thoroughly disinfect each bus at the end of the day.

“We also implemented rear door boarding, we stopped taking a fare so we could provide social distancing for our drivers. We do use the front door for people with disability and mobility devices,” Pumphrey says.

A shower curtain type of material installed to protect the drivers could also give way to a new, sturdier barrier if all goes as planned.

“Eventually if we get those in we can go back to collecting a fare so we can provide an appropriate protective device for drivers because the passengers get on and pay for their fare up front,” Pumphrey says.

And the DTA is looking at requiring all passengers to wear a mask to help increase safety for everyone riding the bus.

“We’re working with a local non-profit that may be able to provide masks at the DTC where they will do a day where they will give them out free,” Pumphrey says.

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