New Brunswick’s Dial-A-Ride service, sidelined for a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, made its return to service this month. The restart of the program includes numerous COVID-19 safety measures for the health of passengers and drivers. Social distancing is required while on the vans, as well as wearing masks or face coverings, temperature screenings prior to boarding and completing a health questionnaire before each trip. The vans are fitted with soft-shield barriers, air filters and sanitizer. In between trips, the Dial-A-Ride drivers will sanitize touch surfaces including all seats and handrails.
In March, New Brunswick’s Department of Social Services announced a year-long partnership with Parker Health Group, Inc. that would result in funding for various senior citizen-friendly programs, including the relaunch of Dial-A-Ride.
“The return of Dial-A-Ride is extremely important to our senior community as well as their caregivers,” says City of New Brunswick Mayor Jim Cahill. “As more in-person services are being restored, mobility and access to reliable transportation become that much more crucial. We are extremely grateful for the support and generosity of Parker Health Group which has allowed us to get this program back up and running.”
Reservations for rides are now being taken. All transports are on a first-call, first-served basis. There will be a maximum of 2 to 4 passengers per van, depending on the capacity of the specific vehicle. Priority will be given to riders receiving life-sustaining treatments such as dialysis or cancer treatments. To reserve, call Dial-A-Ride at (732) 745-5161. Service is available Monday through Friday (excluding Holidays) from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.