Transit Assistance Program driver training

The MArtap and MAurbantap training curriculum is offered free of charge throughout the year, and is designed to help rural, small urban, and urban transit providers meet all the federal and state certification requirements.

ATTENTION: At this time, MArtap and MAurbantap are offering both in-person and remote driver training options in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Please see the "Online Training" section below for more details on available remote options.

Table of Contents

Required Training for 5310 & MAP Sub-recipients

MassDOT has mandated that all vehicle recipients under 5310 and Mobility Assistance Program (MAP) agree to ensure all vehicle drivers, paid and volunteer, receive proper training; therefore, the following training courses are required.

  • Accessible Lift Use and Passenger Securement (formerly Wheelchair Lift & Securement)
  • CPR (Not offered by MArtap)
  • Defensive Driving (formerly Coaching the Van Driver, NSC DDC3)
  • Disability Awareness (formerly Safe Transport of the Public under the ADA)
  • First Aid (Not offered by MArtap)
  • Substance Abuse Awareness Training (online course)

Training provided by MArtap and MAurbantap

Training Course Delivery Method Course Length Certification

Defensive Driving

In-person, by request

3 hours

2 years

Passenger Assistance Training (PAT)
Module I = Disability Awareness
Module II = Accessible Lift Use & Passenger Protection

In-person, by request

Module I = 3 hours
Lunch break = 1 hour
Module II = 4 hours

8 hours total

2 years

 

Disability Awareness

In-person, by request

3 hours

3 years

Accessible Lift Use & Passenger Securement

In-person, by request

4 hours

2 years

Defensive Driving

Online webinar, offered monthly

2 hours

1 year

Disability Awareness

Online webinar, offered monthly

2 hours

1 year

Diversity & Sensitivity in Transit

Online webinar, offered quarterly

2 hours

1 year

Defensive Driving

Required upon hire and every two years thereafter to maintain proficiency. This class is 4 hours geared toward the informational needs of the professional van/small bus driver. The goal of the course is accident prevention. Topics covered in this curriculum include:

  • Vehicle safety inspection, pre-trip inspection
  • Defensive driving tools
  • Rules of the road
  • City, highway, and rural driving
  • Following distance, breaking, merging, passing, scanning, backing
  • Cushion of safety
  • Rail crossings
  • Hazards
  • Intersection etiquette
  • Blind spots
  • Safe stopping points
  • Pick-up and drop-off procedures
  • Van characteristics
  • Drug and Alcohol Awareness Safety Sensitive employee training

Passenger Assistance Training (PAT)

The PAT is an intensive training course that includes video, handouts, a hands-on practicum, and certificate of completion. Training includes both classroom instruction and "hands-on" practice to address ADA regulations and requirements, passenger sensitivity, lift operation, and wheelchair securement.

The PAT consists of two separate training modules (Disability Awareness and Accessible Lift Use & Passenger Securement) and is designed for new hires who have not received prior training. This class is 8 hours. Each module can also be offered separately as a standalone refresher course for veteran drivers looking to renew their certificates.

Disability Awareness

Required upon hire and every three years thereafter to maintain proficiency. This class is 3 hours and covers the basic terms and requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This course is geared to all members of the transit industry. The curriculum will:

  • Identify and list major categories of disabilities
  • Identify issues involved in transporting passengers with disabilities
    Describes various procedures for interacting with passengers with disabilities

Accessible Lift Use and Passenger Securement

Required upon hire and every two years thereafter to maintain proficiency. This class is 4 hours provides the opportunity for participants to learn about and discuss accessible lift operation and wheelchair securement, including:

  • Proper tie-down procedures
  • Mobility device securement techniques
  • Passenger restraint techniques

This class will require the driver to perform a hands-on proficiency exam to receive a certificate of completion. This includes the use of the accessible lift, moving the passenger in a mobility device and securing a passenger in a mobility device inside the vehicle.

Participants need to be dressed appropriately for work in and on the vehicles (e.g., sturdy shoes with fully enclosed toes; sandals are not allowed). Participants should also be aware of the current weather and dress appropriately for both inside and outside work.

Diversity & Sensitivity in Transit

Optional training, but highly recommended. This class is 2 hours and is designed to assist transit employees in maintaining effective customer service relationships by recognizing and responding to the diverse needs of individuals and groups they serve. This course is geared to all members of the transit industry. The objectives of the course are to provide participants with the knowledge and skills to:

  • Define diversity and its many dimensions
  • Be sensitive to the uniqueness and needs of customers
  • Identify barriers to valuing diversity
  • Recognize diversity issues and their impact on customer relations
  • Discuss strategies for valuing diversity

Additional required training that is NOT offered by MArtap or MAurbantap

CPR is required upon hire and must be renewed each year or per instructions of the trainer. Known as "Adult and Infant Heart Saver", this course teaches skills to rescue adults and infants using cardiopulmonary resuscitation. It also covers obstructed airways incidents and is appropriate for most lay persons. This course is typically offered by local police/fire departments or town halls.

First Aid is required upon hire and must be renewed every two years or per the instructions of the trainer. This course is designed to give the student basic First Aid knowledge. It covers rescue breathing, foreign body obstruction management, treatment of shock, wounds, poisoning, burns, heat stroke, frostbite, fractures and the management of heart, diabetic, and epileptic emergencies. This course is typically offered by local police/fire departments or town halls.

Substance Abuse Awareness Training is required upon hire and is an online course offered by National RTAP.

In-Person Training

In-person training is offered by request of the hosting agency. To request in-person training, fill out a MArtap or MAurbantap hosting request form.

Proficiency testing following the training courses will be executed in two stages: 1) a written exam, and, in the case of the PAT training or the standalone Accessible Lift Use & Passenger Securement training, 2) a hands-on proficiency test. The written exam will incorporate questions on information provided by the instructor during the training (as well as the 3 key phrases announced during the course). Following successful completion of the written exams, each driver will be scheduled for a 45-minute practicum exam to take place at the identified hosting location for the PAT or Accessible Lift Use & Securement trainings. The hands-on proficiency exams will be conducted individually following the classroom portion of the course. Certificates will be issued following test completion and agency verification that the driver attended the course.

Online Training

Online webinars were introduced during the COVID-19 pandemic, and, due to their popularity, will remain on the MArtap and MAurbantap calendars for the foreseeable future. Each online course is two hours long and is conducted through the GoToWebinar platform.

Even though the course is being held virtually, attendance will be taken, and registrants are encouraged to participate and ask questions. Proficiency testing following the webinar will be executed via a Survey Monkey test that must be completed by participants within 5 days of the training. The test will incorporate questions on information provided by the instructor during the training (as well as the 3 key phrases announced during the webinar) to ensure the participant attended the entire training. Certificates will be issued following test completion and agency verification that the driver attended the course.

Successful completion of the online training courses will result in a one-year certification. The limitations with virtual learning, such as distractions at home/office, reduced instructor and participant engagement, and the shortened class duration, can have an impact on information retention. Therefore, the certification length for online training has been reduced compared to the in-person certification lengths.

Please note that the PAT and the standalone Accessible Lift Use & Passenger Securement module cannot be conducted via online webinar. Both courses require a “hands-on” learning component and proficiency examination that is difficult to conduct through a virtual learning platform.

For more detailed information on the deployment of the remote and/or hybrid driver training courses, please see the COVID-19 Driver Training Information page.

If you have any concerns regarding expired training certificates, please email us at martap@state.ma.us or maurbantap@dot.state.ma.us.

Check the MArtap and MAurbantap Driver Training calendars and register for a course

Access the MArtap driver training calendar or the MAurbantap training session schedule and complete a registration form to sign up for a scheduled MArtap driver training session. To determine your eligibility for MArtap or MAurbantap, check out the Transit Assistance Program Designations list.

Training requests must be submitted to and approved by MArtap or MAurbantap prior to scheduling. Allow 5 days for your request to be processed. Requests will be confirmed by e-mail. Training Classes are subject to cancellation if less than 15 drivers register.

Contact

Phone

Online

Fax

Fax (857) 368-0617

Address

10 Park Plaza,
Suite 4160,
Boston, MA 02116

Online

Contact via Email maurbantap@dot.state.ma.us

Fax

857-368-0617

Address

10 Park Plaza, Suite 4160
Boston, MA 02116
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