COTA Code of Conduct
All passengers must adhere to the following list of acceptable behaviors while riding a COTA bus or while visiting any COTA shelter, bus stop or facility.
BE READY FOR YOUR RIDE
Please be at your stop five minutes before the scheduled departure time. Also, please have your exact cash fare or media ready before boarding the bus. COTA fareboxes do not issue change. Your Operator may deny service if you do not have proper fare.
BRING YOUR STROLLERS AND CARTS
Strollers and carts are permitted on the bus. However, to maintain safety, they cannot block aisles and doorways. Your Operator will instruct you where to position your stroller or cart depending on how many passengers are riding the bus.
RIDE WITH YOUR SERVICE ANIMAL
Service animals specially trained to assist people with disabilities are welcome on board. However, your animal must be on a leash and remain well behaved throughout the ride or you and the animal could be asked to leave. Other animals or pets can only ride if they are inside a cage or case that fits on your lap.
SECURE YOUR MOBILITY DEVICE
The ADA requires that you secure any mobility device you bring on board to protect your fellow passengers and yourself. COTA does not permit Operators to move a bus when a mobility device has not been secured with the straps provided. Please cooperate with your Operator to ensure everyone has a safe ride.
DO NOT DISTRACT THE OPERATOR
Your Operator’s first concern is to ensure you arrive to your destination safely. Please avoid prolonged conversations with the Operator while the bus is in motion.
BE CONSIDERATE OF OTHERS
Loud and disruptive behavior affects everyone. Avoid foul language or gestures, running and yelling. Throwing objects, spitting, fighting or panhandling is also prohibited. Harassing or intimidating the Operator or other passengers could cause you to be arrested or banned from the bus.
TURN DOWN THE VOLUME
Use a low speaking voice during cell phone conversations and avoid using offensive words. Only use sound-producing devices such as cell phones and iPods with headphones. Headphones should be kept at a low to moderate volume. Your favorite playlist should be a private experience.
KEEP IT CLEAN
No feet on the seat. Do not leave trash behind. Shirt and shoes must be worn while riding. COTA requires that its customers maintain acceptable hygiene when riding the bus. Refrain from exposing other passengers to bodily fluids of any kind or odors which may present serious health risks.
Smoking, using any type of tobacco product or using e-cigarettes is prohibited. Please exhale all smoke before boarding. You cannot smoke on COTA property such as bus shelters, terminals and buses.
NO EATING OR DRINKING
Passengers are not permitted to eat or drink when riding. Any food or drink brought on board must be completely covered.
NO DRUGS OR ALCOHOL
Using drugs or drinking alcohol on the bus violates COTA policy and Ohio law.
NO ILLEGAL WEAPONS
Illegal weapons are forbidden on any COTA property. Dangerous equipment that may cause a fire or explosion on the bus such as car batteries, gas cans, paint thinner or lawn mowers is not allowed on the bus.
Equal Employment Opportunity Policy
COTA provides equal employment opportunity to all employees regardless of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, age, disability and military or veteran status, except where a bona fide occupational qualification exists for a specified position. This policy affects all employment practices, including recruitment, selection, promotions, terminations, transfers, layoffs, compensation, training, benefits and other terms and conditions of employment.
Under COTA’s Affirmative Action Plan, discrimination in any terms, conditions, and/or privileges of employment is forbidden.
COTA Stroller Policy
For your convenience, strollers and carts are permitted on all COTA buses.
However, for your safety, Operators must keep aisles and doorways clear and may request that you comply with one or both of the following guidelines:
- Move to the rear of the bus with your stroller or cart
- Fold or collapse your stroller or cart
Thank you for complying with these guidelines.
Your Safety and Security Are Our Top Priority
We care about the safety and security of our riders–it’s our top priority and responsibility. To help ensure safety, all COTA bus operators receive rigorous safety and security training. Operators also receive training via the nationwide Transit On Watch program. Bus operators learn to:
- Call in medical emergencies, incidents, traffic accidents and house fires to the COTA radio room immediately
- Report suspicious individuals on the bus or individuals loitering at bus stops or at Park & Ride locations
- Utilize immediate two-way radio communication to the COTA radio room
We want you to feel safe and secure while riding COTA. If you have any feedback or questions concerning the safety and security of COTA buses or bus stops, please contact our customer service department.