Oct 312011
 
Authors: Erik Carman

As temperatures decline and snow begins to fall, more Rams need rides, leading to an increase in calls to ASCSU’s sober drive program. But whether they are able to answer these calls, said RamRide’s deputy director of nightly operations Kirk Easton, is contingent on the weather.

“We keep an eye on it,” Easton said, adding that they regularly radio vehicles after each drop to monitor weather conditions.

If a single RamRide vehicle spins out, or if there is a white out, all 19 vehicles will be called back, Easton added.

“Our drivers are volunteers,” he said. “And we can’t risk putting their lives in danger.”

And, while RamRide’s operations are contingent on road safety, there is one transportation service on campus that will run no matter what — the CSUPD Safe Walk program.

Lt. Chris Wolf, a 20-year veteran of CSUPD, remembers when he oversaw Safe Walk during its inception in 1993.

“In the past 20 years we’ve only shut down Safe Walk services two or three times,” Wolf said.
However, unlike RamRide, if Safe Walk goes down, police officers will take up the task and help transport students through the hazardous conditions.

“We will do our best to accommodate the students,” Wolf stated “Whether that be with the CSO’s (campus service officer) or our police officers.”

This year, Safe Walk will be using a Jeep solely to help transport students in the evening.

According to Easton, RamRide’s vehicles have nearly doubled in the past couple years, so students needing transportation this winter season won’t need to wait more than an hour, granted the roads aren’t “too icy.”

Collegian writer Erik Carman can be reached at news@collegian.

Safe Walk/RamRide services

  • RamRide now has 19 vehicles, nearly double what they had three years ago.
  • Students can use RamRide from 10 p.m. – 2 a.m during the week, and until 3 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.
  • If RamRide shuts down due to weather conditions, students may call Safe Walk if they need transportation near campus.
  • Police officers can help transport students if weather becomes too harsh for CSO’s to drive in.
  • Safe Walk has stopped its services only a couple times in the past 20 years, in which case police officers were called.
  • RamRide monitors changing weather conditions and plans their services accordingly.
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