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An Act To Require Public Transit To Be Accessible

May 1, 2019

An Act To Require Public Transit To Be Accessible to Riders who are Blind or Visually Impaired

Public Hearings: Thursday, May 2, 2019 1:00 PM, State House, Room 126 for LD 1166 

SUMMARY

This bill requires that all state and municipal vehicles that operate on a fixed route system for the purpose of public transportation must be equipped with an automated announcement system that delivers audible messages to passengers regarding transit route, current and next stop and destination of the vehicle. The bill provides an exemption for vehicles that cannot reasonably be equipped with an automated announcement system. 

Be it enacted by the People of the State of Maine as follows:

Sec. 1. 23 MRSA §4209-B  is enacted to read: § 4209-B.  Automated announcements

1.  Definitions. As used in this section, unless the context otherwise indicates, the following terms have the following meanings.

A.  "Fixed route system" means a transit route that has a predetermined schedule of stops and destinations.

B.  "Public transportation" means a service operated for the purpose of transporting members of the public as passengers from one destination to another.

2.  Automated announcement systems required. Except as provided in subsection 3, all state and municipal vehicles that operate on a fixed route system for the purpose of public transportation must be equipped with an automated announcement system that delivers audible messages to passengers. An automated announcement system must:

A.  Deliver clear messages in the form of recorded, synthesized or digitized speech;

B.  Deliver an audible message outside the vehicle at each stop communicating the applicable transit route, destination of the vehicle and the current stop; and

C.  Deliver an audible message inside the vehicle prior to each stop communicating the applicable transit route, destination of the vehicle and the next stop.

3.  Vehicles exempt. Vehicles that cannot reasonably be equipped with an automated announcement system as determined by the Department of Transportation by rule are exempt from the requirements of subsection 2. 

Rules adopted pursuant to this subsection are routine technical rules as defined in Title 5, chapter 375, subchapter 2-A.

 

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