Sarasota County Area Transit driver tests positive for COVID-19

Health Department encouraging passengers on routes driver handled to monitor themselves for any symptoms

A SCAT bus stops to load and unload passengers. Photo courtesy Sarasota County

On Jan. 27, the Florida Department of Health (DOH) has confirmed a positive COVID-19 test result for a Sarasota County Area Transit (SCAT) driver, county staff reported.

In consultation with the Florida Department of Health in Sarasota County (DOH-Sarasota), “SCAT has identified the following operational dates and routes served by the affected driver,” a news release says:

  • Route 6 — 2 to 9:50 p.m., Jan. 18-21. 
  • Route 14 — 2:15 to 8:15 p.m. on Jan. 16. 

DOH-Sarasota is recommending that persons who rode those routes on the dates listed should monitor themselves for possible COVID-19 symptoms, the release adds.

This is a map of SCAT Route 6. Image courtesy Sarasota County

If a passenger suspects he or she has been exposed to the virus or feels symptoms of COVID-19, DOH-Sarasota is encouraging the individual to contact his or her healthcare provider or DOH-Sarasota, or the person may visit one of the free state testing sites, as follows:

  • Sarasota Kennel Club, located at 5400 Bradenton Road in Sarasota.
  • Robert L. Taylor Community Complex, located at 1845 34th St. in Sarasota.

“In accordance with operational procedures, SCAT buses are thoroughly sanitized nightly and cleaned throughout the day,” the county release points out.

In addition, riders are reminded that fares for SCAT and SCAT Plus services are suspended,” to limit passenger interactions, the release says. Further, riders should enter buses through the rear doors, “practice social distancing and wear masks while using SCAT whenever possible,” the release notes.

SCAT staff asks that anyone with COVID symptoms refrain from using SCAT services.

SCAT bus operators have been provided face masks, gloves, hand sanitizer and operational changes, the release says, to try to protect them from infection.