COLUMBUS (WCMH) – The Central Ohio Transit Authority is taking a step few other transit authorities in the country are taking to keep their busses clean and germ free.
With ridership on the rise because people are going back to work, now was the time the transit authority opted to install a new shield to combat COVID-19.
The new cleaning process is something normally seen in medical facilities or doctor’s offices. Now, COTA putting it on these busses from bumper to bumper.
Hundreds of people ride COTA busses every day, and that number is growing.
“We know that public transportation is a vital part of this community,” said COTA spokesman Jeff Pullin. “There are some neighborhoods where public transit is the number one source of transportation, and it’s really important that they know that we are taking the precautions to keep them safe.”
Safety starts with cleanliness. Crews are using a disinfectant at one of COTA’s bus stops. This particular stop is one of the busiest and gets extra cleanings.
“We have doubled, even tripled it in some cases since the COVID-19 pandemic began,” Pullin said.
Meanwhile, COTA is taking things to the next level on more than 400 transit vehicles by using a product called Aegis Microbe Shield.
“It’s a clear solution that goes bumper to bumper, inside and out of the bus, and what that does is it sticks to the surface,” Pullin said. “It’s good for one year, and it creates an inhospitable environment for microbes, potentially harmful microbes, and it makes the sanitization process that we do every day a little easier.”
In essence, the product acts like a bunch of swords that attract microbes, like a virus. As the microbe is drawn in, it is pierced by the swords, ruptures, and is effectively killed.
“This is something that is not used very often in transit authorities,” Pullin said. “It’s mostly used in medical facilities, it’s used in the hospitality industry, and is used in the textile industry. We are one of the few transit authorities in the country who is using this product right now.”
Because the state has reopened, COTA said it is seeing more demand for public transportation and that means more routes will be opening again soon.