Considerations for Non-emergency Vehicle Transportation for Tribal Communities During COVID-19

Considerations for Non-emergency Vehicle Transportation for Tribal Communities During COVID-19

Tribal community members may need to regularly share personal vehicles with members outside of their own households. They may also need to use personal vehicles to transport people who are visibly sick. In addition, tribal organizations may provide medical transportation to their community members using non-emergency vehicles (cars or vans, for example). The following precautions can be considered to minimize risk of spreading COVID-19 when sharing personal vehicles.

If the driver and passengers are not sick (everyday practices for safe transportation)

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Wear a mask

  • Wear a mask. This is especially important when it’s hard to stay at least 6 feet away from people.

Note: Masks should not be placed on:

  • Babies and children younger than 2 years old
  • Anyone who has trouble breathing or is unconscious
  • Anyone who is incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without help
  • Masks are meant to protect other people in case the wearer is unknowingly infected but does not have symptoms.
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Practice social distancing (also called physical distancing) to the extent possible

  • The passengers should sit as far away as possible from the driver and each other.
  • Travel with windows open or use the vehicle’s vents for fresh air circulation.
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Limit close contact

  • The passenger should sit as far away as possible from the driver.
  • The bigger the vehicle, the better, to allow distancing. Vans are better than cars since they allow for better distancing between the passenger and driver.
  • Travel with windows open or use the vehicle’s vents for fresh air circulation.
  • Avoid picking up other passengers.
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When to Clean

Cleaning with products containing soap or detergent reduces germs on surfaces and objects by removing contaminants and may also weaken or damage some of the virus particles, which decreases risk of infection from surfaces.

Cleaning high-touch surfaces and shared objects once a day is usually enough  to sufficiently remove virus that may be on surfaces unless someone with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 has been in your vehicle. Disinfecting (using disinfectants on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s List Nexternal icon) removes any remaining germs on surfaces, which further reduces any risk of spreading infection.

For more information on cleaning various surfaces and other cleaning guidelines, see Cleaning and Disinfecting Your Facility.

When to Disinfect

You may want to either clean more frequently or choose to clean AND disinfect shared surfaces and objects if certain conditions apply

When Someone Is Sick

If there has been a sick person or someone who tested positive for COVID-19 in the vehicle within the last 24 hours, you should clean AND disinfect the space. For more information on cleaning and disinfecting safely, follow Cleaning and Disinfection Your Facility.

Use Disinfectant Safely

Always read and follow the directions on how to use and store cleaning and disinfecting products. Ventilate the space when using these products.

For more information on cleaning various surfaces and other cleaning guidelines, see Cleaning and Disinfecting Your Facility.