Paducah City Council meeting talks with PATS director about lack of drivers

PADUCAH, Ky. (KBSI)- The Paducah Area Transit Authority is short staffed by nearly fifteen driver’s and it’s causing extreme burnout in their employees.

Paducah Transit provides needed services for the community, along with transportation for medical needs.

Paducah Area Transit runs the downtown trolley, routine bus lines, and a demand and response team which is being impacted the most right now.

Arthur Boykin is the Director for Paducah Transit Authority, “They’ve been able to call PATS, we say you want a ride on Wednesday, call us on Tuesday. And we are there to provide that ride.”

Now Boykin says to ensure a ride you’ll need to call a week in advance.

Paducah Area Transit is providing 250 rides per day between thirteen drivers.

Sometimes they drive for as much as two hours only to find out clients no longer need the ride.

The challenges of being able to pick up clients in due time for their appointments along with trying to pick up as many clients as they can throughout the day is proving to be extremely challenging for drivers.

Boykin states, “It’s taxing for the drivers that we do have, they’re doing twelve hour days, in order to do that number of trips.”

Some PATS drivers are retired from previous careers and have decided they no longer want to drive after the Covid-19 pandemic.

Some say they don’t want to risk their health or health of their loved ones.

The city of Paducah is a co-sponsor of a job fair on August 23rd at the Julian Carrol Convention Center.

Seeking new drivers will be high priority.

Those interesting in applying are encouraged to attend.

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