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RCAT Trimming Hours Due to Lack of Drivers

HUTCHINSON – Due to a lack of drivers, RCAT is making service cutbacks effective July 1st.

As approved by Reno County Commissioners Tuesday, after KDOT granted permission to change operating terms from those listed in a federal grant, RCAT will now operate between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday-Friday and provide only demand service on Saturday until they can hire additional drivers.

Aging and Transportation Director Barbara Lilyhorn said they currently have five driver positions vacant, and of six applicants since last November, only one of them was suitable to be hired. This has caused RCAT to pull para-transit drivers to cover fixed route services.

While they can pay overtime, repeated long hours creates driver fatigue and contributes to burnout. Lilyhorn indicated the service cutback may be in place for some time, though Commissioners expressed a desire to return to prior scheduling as soon as practical.