Rockford Mass Transit changes policy on how buses will pick up passengers

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The Rockford Mass Transit District (RMTD) announced Thursday it will no longer pick up passengers who are not at designated stops.

Previously, RMTD operated a “flagged stop” system, where a passenger could flag down a bus from any corner along a route as long as the bus could safely pull over. Beginning September 1, that will no longer be the case. RMTD will officially become a designated stop only transit system.

RMTD has been preparing for the change for the past year. Officials have evaluated all 25 day and night routes and determined the safest and most accessible locations for bus stops.

They cite a tendency for the “flagged stop” system slowing down routes, specifically during heavy traffic times, in their decision to end the policy. They say the new system will allow RMTD drivers to “maintain route timing easier and insure a smoother ride for passengers.”

The new designated routes will be noted by either an RMTD bus sign or an RMTD shelter.

Passengers with questions on stop locations are encouraged to review the list of bus stops by route at rmtd.org or ask drivers for assistance in locating their stops.

With a fleet of 64 vehicles, RMTD provides 1.6 million rides in Rockford each year.

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