May 17-23 is National Transportation Week — a week designed to acknowledge the hard-working employees in the transportation industry. Especially during this past year, as Omaha Rapid Bus Transit (ORBT) was launched alongside the challenges of the pandemic, Omaha’s transportation employees took on many obstacles.
National Transportation Week also provides an opportunity to recognize the many benefits of public transportation. As more people use public transportation, fewer cars on the road are releasing emissions that pollute the air. Increased use of public transportation also leads to a reduction in the need for parking, which costs money and takes up space.
Plus, it’s healthier for your body. Air pollution has many connections to public health issues, including myocardial ischemia, chest pain, coughing, throat irritation and more. And there is a much lower rate of passenger death rates for buses compared to passenger vehicles.
ORBT helps eliminate many of the barriers that might normally prevent individuals from using public transportation as it is fast, cheap (free until early summer) and convenient. Metro Transit also just announced on April 22 that K-12 students will ride for free as a part of a new pilot program.
If you are unable to use public transportation or are concerned because of the pandemic, another sustainable option is to ride a bicycle. Like using public transit, biking helps the environment and benefits your health in many ways, through increased cardiovascular fitness, decreased stress levels, decreased body fat levels and reduced anxiety and depression. To learn more about the health benefits of bicycling, click here.
You can celebrate National Transportation Week by: