June 27
SmartRide Commuter Service to Offer Fare-Free Rides on Ozone Action Days

The SC Department of Transportation (SCDOT) will offer free fares on the SmartRide commuter service between July 1 and September 30, 2007 on days SCDHEC forecasts Ground-Level Ozone Action Days.


          The “fare-free days” are a partnership with the SC Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC), the South Carolina Energy Office (SCEO), the Newberry Council on Aging, the Central Midlands Regional Transit Authority and the Santee-Wateree Regional Transit Authority.


         SCDOT, SCDHEC, and SCEO are urging motorists in the Midlands to help improve air quality and reduce imports of foreign oil by using the SmartRide commuter service. Currently, SmartRide offers two routes that provide service between Camden and downtown Columbia, and between Newberry and downtown Columbia.


           SCDOT Deputy Director for Mass Transit Glennith Johnson said that commuters can save money, while they help reduce emissions that contribute to forming ground-level ozone. “The summer months are a good time for commuters to try SmartRide’s services while gas prices are high,” said Johnson. “In addition, for every person who uses SmartRide, there’s one less vehicle contributing to traffic congestion on our highways during rush hours, and vehicle emissions are reduced as well,” added Johnson.


Information regarding the SmartRide commuter services may be accessed at:  For more information about reducing oil consumption and using public transit, visit


DHEC provides daily forecasting by 4:00PM each day for ground-level ozone via the internet at, or you can call their toll-free number at 1-866-238-4973.  In the Columbia area, call 898-4094 for ground-level ozone forecasting.  Those interested in receiving the daily ozone forecast via e-mail can subscribe at: