INQLINE Assist – A Game Changer for Ark-Tex Council of Governments
ATCOG (Ark-Tex Council of Governments Rural Transit District) provides low-cost transportation for residents of the Ark-Tex region of Northeast Texas. ATCOG offers this service to county residents from their homes or other designated pickup points to meet the needs of the community. Recently, ATCOG installed the INQLINE Assist Passenger Boarding System on their vehicles to enhance their disability ridership services and improve day-to-day operations.
The INQLINE Assist is a fully integrated, crash-tested, heavy-duty winch system that features dual automatic retractors and an ergonomic thumb controller. It gives you full control of your passenger, allowing you to safely guide a wheelchair up a ramp and into position without the usual shoves, snags, back-injuries or high liability potential associated with normal winch systems.
Mark Compton, Transportation Director at ATCOG, first noticed the system at the South West Transit Association Expo (SWTA). Compton decided they had to have it.
“The INQLINE Assist is a game changer. It’s not just the ease of use it’s the personal safety the system provides for everyone involved,” says Compton. “Our passengers visibly feel more secure.”
Since the implementation of the INQLINE, ATCOG is hearing nothing but positive feedback from both their passengers and their operators. “No one is tipping over backward in their wheelchairs which was a terrifyingly enough previous reality. An operator might get someone to the top of the ramp and lose control which can lead to serious injuries for both the passenger and the operator.”
“The INQLINE Assist is a game changer. It’s not just the ease of use it’s the personal safety the system provides for everyone involved.”
Mark Compton, Transportation Director, ATCOG
ATCOG is a non-profit so the operators are there because they believe in the work they are doing and more importantly, they believe in their passengers. Most of their operators average 60-65 years of age and without the INQLINE, many would often have to quit the job – not due to a lack of spirit but because of the wear and tear on their bodies from manually pushing heavy wheelchairs up a ramp. “My operators now know they don’t have to manually push wheelchairs up a ramp anymore and they can stay on with us for years longer,” says Compton. “Cost savings aside, I can keep these great people that are putting their heart and soul on the line because they aren’t getting injured.”
As a result of implementing INQLINE, protocols at ATCOG have been changed. They no longer allow the manual pushing of a wheelchair without supervisors’ approval. “Our operators can see that we are investing in them, their health and their safety,” explains Compton.
“Again, the INQLINE Assist is a game changer for us. What some people look at as a simple piece of equipment is changing the lives of my passengers, my operators and my entire operation. We couldn’t be more excited to have it,” says Compton.
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