Western Cape Government launches Atlantis Red Dot Taxi service
To mark transport month, the Premier of the Western Cape, Alan Winde, the Minister of Transport and Public Works, Daylin Mitchell, and the Minister of Health, Dr Nomafrench Mbombo, launched the Atlantis Red Dot Taxi service today at the Saxonsea vaccine site.
The Red Dot Taxi Service is providing free transport to community members who want to get vaccinated. The launch will be marked by the arrival of community members from Witsand for their vaccine appointment.
Premier Winde said, “The launch of the Atlantis Red Dot taxi service follows a need identified in the local community for free public transport to get vaccinated. The Red Dot Taxi Service is an excellent example of how the Western Cape is innovatively using public transport as part of an all-of-society approach to address important priorities.”
The launch of the Atlantis Red Dot Taxi Service follows the official launch of Transport Month in Belhar on Friday, where there was a specific focus on improving awareness of and advancing road safety, particularly among learners.
Minister Mitchell said: “We are here today to highlight the Atlantis Red Dot Taxi Service that will assist and provide free transport to many community members who need to be vaccinated. This is one of many efforts undertaken by my Department to improve our overall public transport system and to align it with the real needs of our residents.”
Minister Mitchell added: “The Provincial Department of Health identifies those in need of transport through its on-the-ground local community liaison officers and these people are then transported by Red Dot Taxi through coordination by the Department of Transport and Public Works. “
The Red Dot taxi service consists of a fleet of 135 minibus taxis and has transported a total of 8 600 passengers to vaccine sites and made over 285 900 trips in the province. It has further ensured that:
- Over 246 000 healthcare worker trips were conducted from 18 May 2020.
- Support was provided to over 25 hospitals including Groote Schuur, Tygerberg, Helderberg, Lentegeur, Khayelitsha District, and Brackengate.
- More than 27 800 Quarantine & Isolation trips were made since 30 May 2020 in the metro and rural communities.
- Transported approximately 3500 patients discharged patients home from hospitals since 1 January 2021.
Minister Mbombo said: “During the level 4 lockdown, Red Dot Taxis safely transported essential healthcare workers who were stranded due to limited public transport operating hours in the evenings. It also transported citizens who tested positive for COVID-19 or were at high risk of having been exposed to the virus to public isolation and quarantine centres across the Province.”
Minister Mbombo concluded: “It will take a whole of society approach to conquer COVID-19, that is why I am pleased by the partnership between the Western Cape Government and the minibus taxi industry that aims to deliver critical transport services as part of the fight against COVID-19.”