National “Dump the Pump” Day Is Thursday, June 18th

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Thursday, June 18th is National “Dump The Pump” day, an annual event sponsored by the American Public Transportation Association to raise awareness of the benefits of public transit.

Everyone is concerned about saving money and cutting down on expenses these days. And as local gas prices again begin to creep up to $3 a gallon, one of the easiest ways to keep more money in your wallet is to park your car at home and hop on public transportation.

Once again this year, the region’s transportation agencies are urging residents to ride a bus, train, boat, bike, take a walk, or share the ride this Thursday.

National Dump the Pump Day encourages people to ride public transportation to save money, protect the environment, reduce dependence on foreign oil, and improve our quality of life. APTA’s monthly Transit Savings Report consistently ranks the Seattle metropolitan area as one of the top ten regions for potential transit savings.

Community Transit, Everett Transit, Intercity Transit, King County Metro Transit, Kitsap Transit, Pierce Transit, Sound Transit and the WSDOT Ferries Division (Washington State Ferries) are joining agencies across the country to ask those who’ve never tried public transportation to get on board with saving and take a new ride on Thursday. Regular transit users are encouraged to make it a “zero drive” day, and only use transit.

“Puget Sound residents have so many great alternatives to driving—buses, streetcars, vanpools, trains, the iconic ferries, and in less than a month we’ll be adding 16 miles of light rail to that long list,” said Sound Transit CEO Joni Earl.

The agencies in the Puget Sound region share a common goal of offering safe, reliable, and low-cost transportation choices. Yet, each offers a unique array services that interconnect with other agencies to create a very useable transportation network for the region.

Some are hosting special activities for Dump the Pump Day, and others are featuring regular services that can help you save money every day.

King County Metro Transit:
Dump the Pump Day also coincides with the start of summer, and King County Metro Transit wants people who are “staycationing” close to home this year to see how much farther their vacation/holiday dollars stretch when they travel by bus.

In addition to bus routes serving the big-city attractions in Seattle and Bellevue, Metro also has regular service to parks, beaches, malls, movie theaters, ball parks, and hiking trails. There are discounted fares for children and families to help make summertime fun more affordable.

Sound Transit:
Sound Transit, the regional provider of commuter rail and express bus service, has been calculating savings to help its customers “ride out the recession.” Riders have responded by sending in their personal savings stories. Here’s one:

“I live in Queen Anne and work for a non-profit in Redmond, about a 40 mile commute round trip each day. Last year, my employer purchased bus passes for employees and sold them to us for $30. Once I started taking the bus to work, I went from spending about $150 – $200 a month in gas to now about $30. I take the bus more than just to work now; I hardly ever even drive my car at all anymore.”

Sound Transit offers commuters throughout the region several ways to dump the pump to save money and help the environment. Sound Transit operates regional express bus service, Sounder commuter rail service, light rail in Tacoma, and on July 18, Central Link light rail line will launch service between downtown Seattle and Tukwila.

In the Puget Sound region, eight public transportation agencies carry more than 500,000 passengers every weekday and serve a population of more than 3.8 million in the five-county area.?c

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