The ADA and Fixed-Route Buses
SUMMARY: This page is for bus operators and anyone who needs to understand bus accessibility. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) has regulations that describe how operators of fixed-route buses should provide accessible transportation. Watch videos and download the fact sheet below to learn more about this important topic.
The ADA regulations for fixed-route buses detail the features necessary for public buses to be accessible. These features include ramps/lifts for individuals who cannot board a bus using steps, handrails, accessible fare boxes, and reachable buttons/cords to request stops.
The ADA also addresses maintenance requirements, such as keeping bus ramps/lifts in good working order. These requirements also include training bus operators to communicate respectfully with riders with disabilities and to assist riders with boarding and wheelchair securement. Operators must also ensure that stops are verbally announced so riders know where they are and where they are going.
These videos are based on a video series originally created by Cornell University’s Yang-Tan Institute on Employment and Disability. In 2017, the insitute was awarded a grant by the New York State Developmental Disabilities Planning Council (DDPC) to create the Transit Research & Accessibility Center (TRAC). This 2-year project (contract #C024328) included a series of videos about how the ADA applies to public buses.
Download a fact sheet
You can also download a fact sheet for bus operators that highlights key elements of accessible buses and respectful customer service.
Accessible bus transportation can be a lifeline for people with disabilities, providing a means of traveling to work, shopping for groceries, attending classes, visiting a doctor, participating in community events, and so much more.