In Case of a Personal Emergency, Guaranteed Ride Home is There
One of the biggest obstacles to getting people to take public transit regularly is working around their fear that they might someday be “stranded” should an emergency come up. What if, for example, you unexpectedly had to work past your normal quitting time, and you’ll miss the last train. Or, a child falls ill at home and you need to get home moments after you arrived at work…when there aren’t any trains running in the direction you need.
It’s a stressful situation, and VRE understand that sometimes people really need to travel during off-peak hours, no matter that the train schedule says. Thanks to a regional, cooperative effort called the “Guaranteed Ride Home” (GRH) program, there is indeed a “safety net” in place that will guarantee you a ride home in the case of family illness, unscheduled overtime or an unusual emergency.
The program is free and available to all VRE passengers. The ride is paid for in full by GRH up-front, with no reimbursement by the commuter necessary. For those passengers living more than 40 miles away, a cab or rental car may be made available, but the mode of transportation to get you home is ultimately up to the GRH customer service representative.
There are a few things to keep in mind when using GRH:
1) To qualify for the GRH program, you must be pre-registered with the Council of Government (COG). (Unregistered commuters can use GRH one time, but you must then register before you are eligible to use GRH again.) You will be asked to state your normal work hours (i.e., 9-5, 7:30-4:30, etc.) on the registration form mailed to you, call 1-800-745-Ride.
2) The GRH program does not cover gratuities paid to cab drivers.
3) To qualify for an emergency ride due to unscheduled overtime, your supervisor must be available to confirm authorized overtime.
4) As soon as you know that you will have unscheduled call Commuter Connections at 1-800-745-RIDE to schedule your ride. Please call as early as possible. (You can call any time before, but no later than, your normally scheduled quitting time. Additionally, the operator will need to speak to your supervisor to confirm authorized overtime.)
5) The program operates from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. on weekdays. It generally will not run in severe weather or on holidays.
For more information, please call 1-800-745-RIDE.