If you would like personalized training or need more information about how to ride the bus or train, please contact a Customer Advocate.
Every bus has a wheelchair lift or ramp, and drivers are trained to help customers secure their wheelchairs safely. Customers with disabilities should board first and exit last.
Boarding a bus on a lift
To use the lift, wait 7 – 10 feet from the curb. This allows enough room for the lift to be lowered properly. Let the driver know you need to use the lift, and be prepared to board first. Metro Transit drivers are thoroughly trained in operating the lift and will help you get on and off the lift if necessary.
The lift will beep when in motion. When it’s lowered, the driver will indicate when it’s safe to get on the platform. We recommend that you back wheelchairs onto the lift. You also can board facing the driver if it’s easier. Make sure your brakes are locked. Handrails are provided for extra safety. An attendant may ride on the lift with you and help you secure the safety belt.
Each bus has two spaces at the front for customers in wheelchairs. These spaces include safety belts for extra protection. The driver is required to check the belts and make sure your chair is secured. Use the lap belt at all times unless it is physically impossible.
If more than two customers in wheelchairs want to ride, the driver will tell them when the next bus is scheduled to arrive. If the waiting time is longer than 30 minutes, the driver will arrange for an alternate vehicle to pick up passengers.
Exiting the bus
Drivers will announce all major intersections and transfer points. When the bus approaches your stop, signal to the driver by pulling the cord near the window, pushing the vertical bar or verbally notifying the driver.
Allow customers not using the lift to exit first. The driver will then activate the lift. If needed, the driver will help you unbuckle the wheelchair belts and position your chair to face outward on the lift. When you’re in position, lock your brakes and shut off the power on motorized wheelchairs. If possible, hold the handrails.
When you reach ground level, unlock your brakes or turn on your power switch and move away from the lift. Customers who stand on the lift should face outward and hold the handrails as the driver lowers the lift to ground level.
Light-rail trains offer step-free boarding, and are equipped with designated sections for customers using wheelchairs. In addition, all station platforms are fully accessible.
Northstar stations have ramps that allow easier boarding for customers using wheelchairs. Since there is a gap between the platform and the train, the conductor will assist you in boarding.
A note about wheelchairs
By ADA* definition, a wheelchair is a mobility aid belonging to any class of three or four-wheeled devices, usable indoors, designed for and used by individuals with mobility limitations, whether operated manually or powered.
According to the ADA, in order to be carried in a public transit vehicle, such a device cannot exceed 30 inches in width and 48 inches in length when measured two inches above the ground. The ADA also states that service will not be provided if the combined weight of the rider and the wheelchair exceeds 600 pounds.
When possible, for the safety of the occupant, occupants of scooter-type wheelchairs will be asked to transfer from the scooter to a vehicle seat.
*Americans with Disabilities Act
A special transportation service is available for people with disabilities. Metro Mobility is the door-through-door public transportation system for people with disabilities in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area and certain adjoining suburbs. Customers who are certified can call transportation providers to schedule their trips. Get more information or call 651-602-1111 (TTY 651-291-0904).