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THE NEWS WILL LITERALLY TRANSPORT YOU
SHOW COPY OF NEWSPAPER TO UTA DRIVER AND RIDE FREE TO COMBAT POLLUTION

SHARE THE NEWS WILL LITERALLY TRANSPORT YOU
SHOW COPY OF NEWSPAPER TO UTA DRIVER AND RIDE FREE TO COMBAT POLLUTION

The adage, "There's no free ride," won't apply to Deseret News readers this week. In fact, readers can sit back and relax with the newspaper while someone else deals with traffic.

Utah Transit Authority and the Deseret News are uniting to observe Transportation and Energy Awareness Month with Customer Appreciation Week. Monday through Wednesday, Oct. 2-4, those carrying a copy of the Deseret News will be allowed to ride for free anywhere within the UTA system.It's more than a promotional stunt.

A recent Dan Jones Public Opinion Survey showed that 78 percent of Utahns are concerned about air pollution. And the Utah Bureau of Air Quality maintains that automobile exhaust causes about 63 percent of the air pollution in the state.

So it only makes sense to encourage people - particularly people who drive alone - to try public transportation, said UTA's Doug Bruno. "We're trying to educate people about the advantages of alternative transportation. We also want them to think about energy; that it shouldn't be wasted and when it's gone you can't reclaim it."

Throughout October, UTA and the Utah Natural Resources energy office are running advertisements designed to enhance the energy-conscious viewpoint. One colorful poster, featuring Frankenstein, announces "the shocking truth: Wasting energy is revolting." It also suggests people visit the Energy Arcade at the Children's Museum when it opens Oct. 28. The other poster encourages Utahns to "get the thinking driver off the road" to cut traffic congestion in half and save energy.

Reducing the number of people traveling in separate vehicles will lessen standstill traffic problems and eliminate some of the emissions contributing to temperature inversions that lock air pollution into the valley. And it should be a good way to ease into the Utah Department of Transportation's major road-repair projects on I-15 and I-80.

"Best of all, it will reduce traffic congestion downtown," Bruno said. "If more employees ride the bus, there'll be more available parking spaces for customers and clients, and then more people will shop downtown instead of in the suburbs. And it saves energy."

Ridership is expected to increase by about 20 percent (that's 42,000 extra riders systemwide) over the three days.

Monday riders can travel free by presenting either Sunday or Monday's paper. Tuesday travelers need either the Monday or Tuesday edition and on Wednesday either Tuesday's or Wednesday's paper will be acceptable.