by Rob Strauss
Due to the increase in the number of the orange and green electric carts on campus, training will now be required for those workers who drive them.
“It is important that rules are implemented,” said Jeff Boster, safety specialist for the University of La Verne. “In the past there really wasn’t much training.”
The training will be mainly verbal in which the drivers will learn which routes to travel. Furthermore there are plans for a hand-out and a safety video.
“I think it’s a great thing because some people don’t know and will take the wrong route,” said Richard Puente, Housekeeping worker. “You’ve got to know which areas to go and where it’s less crowded around the students.”
In the past all that was needed for people to drive the cart was an authorized driving slip. Workers would get this slip by possessing a current California driver’s license.
On Feb. 14, a cart hit a truck belonging to Michael Laponis, associate professor of communications. Boster states that the training is not being implemented because of that incident.
“We had been talking about it before that incident occurred,” said Boster.
Oris Barber, director of human resources, also said that it was not because of the incident though “it reinforced that we needed to do it.”
Barber said that other incidents have happened in the past where a person has fallen out of the back of a cart while standing up. In another incident, a worker left the keys in the cart and neighborhood kids climbed in and began to drive it around.
With the growth in number of students and departments, there has also been a growth in the amount of carts on campus.
Currently athletics, the mailroom, operations, data processing, telecommunications and housekeeping all use the carts. There are approximately 22 carts that make their way around campus.
“Naturally with more carts the use will grow,” said Boster. “There is a need to provide transportation.”
The increase in carts has also been caused by eliminating the use of gas-powered trucks. Boster cites the reasoning for this being accessibility and the environment.
“They have been slowly phased out the last two to three years,” said Boster.