09/05/2017

 

 



THE BUS INDUSTRY STEPS UP TO
HELP HURRICANE HARVEY VICTIMS

  School Buses Serve Evacuees as Harvey Shuts Down Schools

HOUSTON - With the storm known as Harvey wreaking havoc in southeastern Texas and causing school closures, some school bus operations in the region have been contributing to relief efforts.

In Humble Independent School District (ISD), for example, school bus drivers have transported evacuees - as well as donated food and supplies - to local shelters.

School buses from nearby New Caney ISD were also dispatched to support the evacuation efforts in Humble, according to Humble ISD Superintendent Liz Celania-Fagen.

HOUSTON - With the storm known as Harvey wreaking havoc in southeastern Texas and causing school closures, some school bus operations in the region have been contributing to relief efforts.

Due to the flooding from Hurricane Harvey, Humble ISD’s school opening is expected to be delayed until at least Thursday, Sept. 7.

"As flood waters recede, district staff are assessing each campus and working with authorities to determine when closed roadways will reopen," the district said in an announcement on its website. 
Other Houston-area school districts are also closed this week because of the storm.

Meanwhile, Houston ISD is providing resources for employees affected by Harvey and is accepting donations to aid students.  "We have had school communities as far away as New York and Missouri ask what they can do," Houston ISD Superintendent Richard Carranza said in a press release. "Well, this is what we need: food, clothing, and school supplies to make sure that when our students are finally back in the classroom, they are ready to learn."

In Beaumont ISD, the transportation team pitched in to ferry residents to shelter. The district posted a photo on Facebook of one of its school buses working its way through floodwaters.   READ MORE >

 

  Capital Metro helps to rescue those impacted by Hurricane Harvey

Building on its status as a public service both in the city of Austin, Texas as well as the state, Capital Metro staff recently were involved in the Hurricane Harvey rescue efforts for people in a medical facility in Corpus Christi.

From Metro:

Building on its status as a public service both in the city of Austin, Texas as well as the state, Capital Metro staff recently were involved in the Hurricane Harvey rescue efforts for people in a medical facility in Corpus Christi.

"Within an hour-and-a-half of getting a request for aid, we were able to send five of our paratransit vehicles with staff out to Corpus Christi to move 10 people in wheelchairs from their medical facility in Corpus Christi to a shelter in San Antonio," explained Chad Ballentine, VP, demand response and innovative mobility, for Captial Metro.

Ballentine added that the response from Capital Metro staff was a big part of the success of the rescue efforts.

"It was great because a lot of the drivers had shifts the next day, but a lot of them were ready to volunteer, and all of the operations folks were ready to pitch in even though they had already worked that day and it was clear this would be an overnight operation," he said.     READ MORE >

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  Exclusive to Metro: Houston METRO gives Hurricane Harvey service update

In the wake of Hurricane Harvey, Houston METRO resumed some bus and rail services, on a limited basis, and is continuing to provide medically-necessary and life-sustaining paratransit service in areas that are not still impacted by flood waters, debris, or damage.

“We were able to get about 20 bus routes back on line starting today and a portion of our rail line,” said Laura Whitley, spokesperson for Houston METRO, on Thursday morning. “Those routes represent about 50 percent of our ridership, so we are very excited to be able to re-launch those services.”

Whitley said there are still thousands in METRO’s service area that are still evacuated and expects the majority of those people getting back to work are those working in nearby medical centers and others continuing to help in the hurricane relief efforts.

In the wake of Hurricane Harvey, Houston METRO resumed some bus and rail services, on a limited basis, and is continuing to provide medically-necessary and life-sustaining paratransit service in areas that are not still impacted by flood waters, debris, or damage.

Although she was not quite up to speed yet on damage incurred to METRO facilities and assets, Whitley said there were a few vehicles damaged when the storm waters rose. She added, however, the agency did plan ahead to minimize possible damage to its vehicles.

“In particular, we parked several buses on an elevated HOV lane to protect them from a lower-lying area,” she said. “Operations did take into account our assets and tried to locate them in places that would protect them.”

METRO’s team was also beneficial during the rescue efforts, shuttling evacuees to two large shelters in the Central Houston area.

“METRO is also providing transportation, as needed, for those people at the shelters who need to go to the pharmacy and different things like that,” Whitley said. “And, we will continue to provide support for people who have been displaced, in terms of providing them transportation in the coming days, so we’re working on those go-forward plans right now as well.”         READ MORE >

 


 

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