Unique Bus Promotes Safety and Wellness While Transporting on LBI
Southern Ocean Medical Center's new Emergency Department featured on bus wrap for LBI transportation initiativeStarting in mid-June, residents and tourists on Long Beach Island (LBI) will notice some very unique buses riding up and down the boulevard between 10:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. The buses will travel back and forth from Holgate to Barnegat Light, stopping to pick up anyone who gives a wave and would like a free ride to a destination along the Long Beach Boulevard.
Keeping summer safety top of mind, one of the buses has been specially wrapped and touts information about the new emergency department at Southern Ocean Medical Center.
This special collaborative was established between the LBI municipalities and the LBI Chamber of Commerce and serves several purposes. First, it improves access to businesses throughout the island. Bus goers can easily ride to any business on the island, without the hassle of finding a parking space in some of the busiest areas. Second, it helps to reduce the number of cars traveling the roadway, which is shared with bicyclists and pedestrians. And third, it is a safe alternative to reduce drinking and driving on the island.
Joseph Lattanzi, M.D., Radiation Oncologist at Southern Ocean Medical Center and Deputy Mayor of Long Beach Township is the driving force behind the project and was eager to get the hospital involved.
"This is a free service for our community, which is largely funded by advertising on the buses," explains Dr. Lattanzi. "We wanted to demonstrate to potential advertisers how the bus wrap would serve as an effective advertising tool. As a dedicated supporter of the medical center, I saw this as a great opportunity to create a prototype while also promoting the newly renovated state of the art Emergency Room Services at Southern Ocean Medical Center."
The pilot for the bus initiative began in 2013, with two school buses donated by Southern Regional School district and used on part of LBI. It was a way to help local businesses bounce back after Hurricane Sandy. The pilot was well received and expanded island wide in 2014 with six new buses. The organizers anticipate that one of the buses will travel past any given point about every 10-15 minutes. There are no designated pick up areas; people can simply stand curbside and wave down the bus when they see it approaching, and then tell the driver to stop at a destination of choice.
"This is a creative solution for a heavily populated summer destination," says Joe Coyle, president of Southern Ocean Medical Center. "Creating increased awareness of the health resources that are close to LBI is an important message for locals and tourists. We're pleased to be part of this new service."
About Southern Ocean Medical Center
Southern Ocean Medical Center in Manahawkin is a member of the Meridian Health family, which includes Jersey Shore University Medical Center and K. Hovnanian Children's Hospital in Neptune, Ocean Medical Center in Brick, Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank, and most recently, Bayshore Community Hospital in Holmdel. Southern Ocean Medical Center is home to a wide range of clinical services and programs specializing in cardiovascular and stroke care, maternity and women's health, orthopedics and joint health, bariatric surgery, and wellness and prevention programs. Part of Meridian Cancer Care, Southern Ocean Medical Center provides comprehensive cancer services, including radiation oncology, surgery, and clinical trials, and is connected to specialized programs and services throughout Meridian Health. For more information, visit SouthernOceanMedicalCenter.com or call 1-800-DOCTORS.