Cherriots Temporarily Suspends Service in Response to Pandemic

Posted on March 30, 2020

Beginning Tuesday, March 31, the Salem Area Mass Transit District is suspending its local and regional service until further notice.

The paratransit service, Cherriots LIFT, will provide life-sustaining trips only, including appointments for medical care and dialysis treatment.

“In the interest of public health and safety, we are temporarily suspending service,” said General Manager Allan Pollock. “We are committed to serving our Mid-Willamette Valley customers, but only if we can assure the well-being of both our riders and our operators.”

This action is being taken to further support the Governor’s executive order (Executive Order 20-12) requiring social distancing in order to help flatten the curve.

To date, the District has been experiencing significant staffing shortages due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, seven staff have self-reported confirmation of coronavirus.

During the suspension, the District’s buses and buildings will be deep cleaned; operations staff will be placed on temporary leave; administrative staff will work remotely, if appropriate; and other employees will work onsite observing social distancing guidelines. Executive leadership will continue to meet daily to develop a plan that will safely restore public transportation service to Marion and Polk counties.

Customer service will be available to answer questions and provide information by telephone, 503-588-2877, by email, and social media. Customer service hours are Monday-Friday, 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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