2:43:20pm | Wednesday, September 20th, 2017
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LinkPlus

What is LinkPlus Paratransit?

LinkPlus is the name of the transportation service provided by Link Transit as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act for individuals whose disability prevents them from using the regular fixed-route bus service either all of the time, temporarily, or under certain circumstances.

It is a modified door-to-door (line of sight), advanced reservation (minimum one day), shared ride service. You can expect to share a vehicle with others wanting to travel at a similar time in the same general direction.

LinkPlus service will either be for the entire trip when traveling within a community or, if appropriate, as a Connector to or from a regular bus for travel between communities. It is not cab service or emergency medical transportation.

Where Can I Travel?

LinkPlus service is provided up to ¾ of a mile beyond where the regular (non-commuter) fixed-route buses travel.

If you live beyond ¾ of a mile from where the regular fixed-route buses operate, you would need to travel on your own to the nearest accessible location.

When Can I Travel?

LinkPlus is available during the same days and times as the regular (non-commuter) fixed-route buses operate; which vary by community. Some areas have no Saturday service and Link does not operate at all on Sundays.

As a shared ride service, it may not be possible to schedule your ride at the exact time you wish. Trips could be scheduled up to an hour earlier or later than your request.

Your travel time will be similar to as if you were making the trip by regular fixed-route bus, not a car or taxi.

Transporting Mobility Aids

LinkPlus vehicles are designed to accommodate wheelchairs, scooters, and other mobility aids with three (3) or more wheels that measure 30 inches wide, 48 inches long and 600 pounds in total weight (you and the mobility device).

Individuals that exceed these standards will be transported on a space-available basis as long as it can be done safely and without compromising safety devices and features installed on vehicles and mobility aides or putting our guests or operators at risk of injury.

Service Animals

Link Transit allows a Service Animal to accompany a rider on board all vehicles.

"Service animal means any guide dog, signal dog, or other animal individually trained to work or perform tasks for an individual with a disability". The work or tasks performed by a service animal must be directly related to the individual's disability.

Any other animal/pet that a rider wishes to take on board must be in a suitable, securely closed container that the rider or companion can comfortably carry and does not interfere with other passengers on board the vehicle.

Personal Care Attendants

Link Transit does not provide custodial care. Drivers may only provide assistance to and from the front door of a home or business and up and down one (1) step as long as they can maintain line-of-sight of their vehicle. They may only carry bags or packages not exceeding 25lbs in combined weigh. Persons requiring assistance while waiting, riding in a vehicle, or understanding may have a Personal Care Attendant (PCA) ride with them at no additional cost.

A PCA is defined as an individual who is designated or employed specifically to provide care and assistance to the rider, including travel on Link and LinkPlus.

LinkPlus Eligibility Requirements

Individuals must apply and be found eligible according to ADA guidelines, which require that functional ability to use the fixed-route bus service must be evaluated. It is not a medical decision.

Eligibility for LinkPlus service is evaluated through an In-Person Transit Review. The purpose of the review is to determine whether an individual can ever use fixed-route or if only specific circumstances create a barrier.

We will work with you to see what your specific transportation need's are and how LinkPlus can best assist you with those needs.

If you are determined eligible for LinkPlus service, you will receive one of the following types of eligibility:

• Unconditional: Your disability always prevents you from being able to board, ride, or disembark from any fixed-route bus.

• Conditional: You are able to use fixed-route for some of your trips. You are not able to use the bus in circumstances where a barrier (functional, environmental or architectural) prevents you from getting to or from a bus stop. Examples:

- Functional: You can travel up to two blocks (with some or no difficulty). You would be able to use LinkPlus for trips that would require you to travel more than two blocks to and from a bus stop.

- Environmental: Your functional abilities are affected by extreme cold weather. You would be able to use LinkPlus anytime during the winter.

- Architectural: If you use a wheelchair and there are no curb cuts allowing you to cross streets.

• Temporary: You have a disability/injury that temporarily prevents you from using the fixed-route bus. Temporary service could be either Unconditional or Conditional.

The fact that using the regular fixed-route bus service may be more difficult or less convenient or not having a Drivers License is not criteria for eligibility.

How To Apply For LinkPlus Service

If you believe you are eligible for this service, you will need to complete an application packet, then schedule an appointment for In-person Review by calling Guest Services at 662-1155 (TDD 664-7287)

A Representative will assist you with making an appointment to come to Columbia Station, Link Transit's inter-modal facility for your In-Person Review.

Columbia Station is located at 300 S. Columbia St., Wenatchee.

At the Transit Review you will be asked:

• For your completed In-Person Transit Review Information Sheet, Informed Consent and Professional Verification Release Form and Common Trips form (these are all included in the application packet which you may download here)

• For a State or Federal issued form of picture identification

• To submit any letters and documents regarding your disabilities to be considered for eligibility

• To bring the mobility aid you normally use for travel

Participation in the Transit Review means:

• Answering questions and performing simple tests to assess your ability to use accessible buses

• Taking a short walk with the Evaluator so they may observe your ability to navigate a typical path of travel; sidewalks, curb-cuts and cross walks.

The Transit Review will take approximately 45 minutes.

Within 21 days after completing the Transit Review, you will be notified by mail on how LinkPlus can assist you with your travel needs.

If you do not agree with the eligibility determination, you have a right to appeal within 60 days of the eligibility notice.

To download a copy of the current LinkPlus Riders Guide: LP_Riders_Guide.doc

To download the LinkPlus application form and other required forms: LinkPlus_Application.doc

 

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