National RTAP's START Online eLearning Module offers basic safety training for new transit drivers or refresher training for more experienced drivers. This online course enhances and reinforces learning through interactive exercises, scenarios, games, and quizzes, and tests learning in a final exam.
START Online is available for free on the National RTAP eLearning system
. You will need to register, at no cost, to access the online course, or you can order the hard-copy START Learner's Guide, which includes a DVD version of the online course.
The content is broken up into three sections and there is a brief introduction module:
Section 1: Vehicle Safety - will show you procedures for the important pre-trip inspection, en-route, and post-trip vehicle inspections.
Section 2: Driver/Operator Safety - will teach you the basics of safe vehicle operation, including fitness for duty, defensive driving, good safety habits, coping with adverse driving conditions, and more.
Section 3: Passenger Safety - covers procedures for safely picking up and dropping off ambulatory and non-ambulatory passengers, securing mobility devices such as scooters and wheelchairs, handling difficult passengers, security awareness, vehicle evacuation, and emergency situations, as well as skills for interacting with passengers.
The total estimated duration is six hours, though it will depend on each learner. Although completing the modules in order is recommended, learners can jump around as needed. There are certificates of completion for each section and one for completing the entire course.
START Online can be used for self-paced training, as refresher training, or in conjunction with the instructor-led version of START as a hybrid training. The latter option is useful for agencies with limited time for in-person training, enabling them to focus on the hands-on content.
START Online was developed from National RTAP's Safety Training and Rural Transit, through a partnership with the Center for Transportation eLearning (CTEL). The online course was produced by Zipline Performance Group and the content was updated in 2015 by Nusura, Inc.