September 16, 2010

MV opens inquiry to improve D.C. MetroAccess hiring, training

MV Transportation, the D.C. Metro contractor responsible for operating the MetroAccess paratransit service, initiated an independent inquiry of its hiring and training policies, to ensure the company and its subcontractors are maximizing passenger safety.

Former Federal Transit Administration Chief Counsel Patrick W. Reilly has been appointed to lead the inquiry, which will help MV determine how it can go beyond its legal responsibilities in an effective way to provide additional protections to passengers.

"The inquiry will look for ways that maximize passenger safety that go beyond any applicable standards," Reilly said.

Additionally, Reilly also will meet with representatives of passengers as part of the inquiry process.

Currently, MV does nationwide background checks upon hiring any drivers and the company does annual re-certifications on each existing employee. MV's taxi subcontractors use FBI background checks. Drivers are also required to complete the company's 110-hour training program, which includes 64 hours of riding with experienced trainers to learn how to appropriately interact with passengers. Additionally, drivers are trained in sexual harassment prevention.

MV said that the inquiry should be completed in 90 days, with all findings and recommendations will be shared with Metro.

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