YUMA, Ariz. ( KYMA, KECY) -The Yuma County Area Transit ( YCAT) comes forward after seven of its employees tested positive for the coronavirus.
Shelly Kreger, the Transit Director, confirms with News 11 that three of those employees have returned to work after testing negative for the virus. Kreger says in late March the company went fair-free to reduce the contact between employees and customers.
“On all the busses that do have the rear door loading, we do it that way instead of the front to lessen the contact between the drivers and the passengers," said Kreger.
However, she said becoming fair-free comes with a cost.
YCAT could potentially lose thousands of dollars. “Were loosing if we were to go for an entire year, it’s close to about 450- thousand dollars in cash that we usually use to match our federal grants," said Kreger.
Since the pandemic struck, the company has seen a 75 percent decrease in ridership. “We’re running right now an average of about 500 passengers a day when we use to run 2,00 a day," said Kreger.
Kreger tells News 11's Carmen Valencia that YCAT received $8.2 million dollars from the CARES ACT, and with this money, it will help YCAT stay afloat throughout the crisis to continue providing services to the community. “To run our service, bus repairs. Whatever our normal service is, that will help us pay for that," said Kreger.
YCAT has implemented safety measures for its employees and passengers.
Some of those include temperature checks for employees before their shift, installing methods to sit passengers ever other seat, and constant cleaning checks of the busses used.