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RIPTA CELEBRATES 11th ANNUAL NATIONAL DUMP THE PUMP DAY ON THURSDAY, JUNE 16, 2016 WITH LOCAL MASCOTS

June 13, 2016

The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA) announced today that it will join other public transportation systems nationwide in participating in the 11th annual “National Dump the Pump Day” on June 16th  – and some special guests will be at Kennedy Plaza to help commuters start their day with a smile. Mascots from Providence College, Brown University, the University of Rhode Island, the Providence Bruins and the Pawtucket Red Sox will be at the plaza at 7am. RIPTA is inviting passengers to show their support of public transit by taking a picture of themselves on a bus or posing with their favorite mascot and uploading their photos to social media with the hashtag #DumpThePump.

Started in June 2006 when gas prices were $3 per gallon, this national awareness day emphasizes that public transportation is a convenient travel option that also helps people save money.  “While gas prices fluctuate, public transit remains an economical, environmental-friendly way to commute,” said Barbara Polichetti, Director of Public Affairs for RIPTA.  “We hope our passengers have fun seeing Samboni, Bruno, Rhody, Friar Dom and other mascots from their local Rhode Island sports teams.  We’d also like to remind people that although supporting public transportation is the main focus of “Dump the Pump” day, it’s also a day to focus on other ways of commuting that help reduce the number of single occupancy vehicles on the road, such as carpooling, walking or even telecommuting.”

Polichetti said that RIPTA wants people to know that they can still enter the 2016, “RI Bike To Work Challenge – a fun, free, online trip-tracking competition, being sponsored by the Authority’s Commuter Resource team.  Participants can challenge themselves, and others, to bike to work as much as possible from now through – June 30.  The challenge is for new and experienced riders alike, and participants will have the chance to win a new bike from NBX Bikes.  Commuter Resource RI, an outreach component of RIPTA, is a program designed to promote commuting alternatives.  If anyone is interested in learning more about the resources available to help “dump the pump”, they can email  commuter@ripta.com or visit trytransitri.com. 

According to a recent APTA Transit Savings Report, individuals in a two-person household can save an average of more than $9,312 annually by downsizing to one car. Additionally, public transportation is a cornerstone of local economies in urban, suburban, and rural communities. In fact, a public transportation system helps to make a community economically prosperous and competitive.  Every $1 invested in public transportation generates approximately $4 in economic returns, powering community growth and revitalization, according APTA.

For schedules and more information, passengers may call 401-781-9400, or visit www.ripta.com.