July 25, 2014 11:21 AM ET

Road and Rail

Company Overview of Central Ohio Transit Authority

Company Overview

Central Ohio Transit Authority offers transit and mobility solutions for the communities. It operates a fleet of buses and trolleys and provides transportation services for physically challenged people. COTA was founded in 1971 and is based in Columbus, Ohio.

1600 McKinley Avenue

Columbus, OH 43222

United States

Founded in 1971

Phone:

614-275-5800

Key Executives for Central Ohio Transit Authority

Chief Executive Officer and President
Age: 74
Compensation as of Fiscal Year 2014.

Central Ohio Transit Authority Key Developments

Central Ohio Transit Authority Settles Suit with Blind Riders for $95,000

Central Ohio Transit Authority has promised to better adhere to a federal law that requires drivers to announce stops for passengers who can't see signs on buses and bus stops. Two blind passengers have settled a federal discrimination lawsuit against COTA for a total of $95,000 and assurances that the transit authority will do a better job of training its drivers and monitoring their compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Based on a copy of the settlement, COTA has agreed to train half its drivers next year and the other half in 2014 on the importance of announcing stops for visually impaired passengers. The agency also will hire an outside contractor this 2012 and next to monitor compliance with the federal requirement. A Dispatch check in January 2011 found that almost two-thirds of drivers followed the federal law by telling an obviously blind passenger where they were headed, but automated announcements worked on only six of 39 buses. Bus passengers Christopher Cooley and Linda Forney sued COTA in federal court in December 2010, claiming that the transit authority discriminated by systematically failing to provide basic public transportation for those with disabilities. The plaintiffs said drivers didn't stop in front of disabled riders, didn't announce stops and dropped off disabled riders 'in unknown and dangerous locations'. COTA denied in court documents that it had discriminated against disabled passengers. It admits no wrongdoing in the settlement. COTA has been in court on these issues in the past, though. The National Federation of the Blind sued the transit authority in 2000 on similar grounds. As part of a settlement, it agreed then to make sure that bus drivers announced stops. In the new settlement, COTA also agreed to designate an employee to monitor its compliance with the 1990 federal law that guarantees disabled Americans access to transportation and other public accommodations.

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