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Rules of Conduct

We've established these rules to enhance safety and the customer experience, to facilitate the proper use of our transit facilities, to protect our transit facilities and passengers, and to assure the payment of fares for the use of the system.

These rules were updates in 2016 to reflect changes in the law and changes in fare media, improve our ability to better address fare media fraud, incorporate policies prohibiting harassment and bullying, and to regulate the transport of animals and use of personal recreational devices such as skateboards.

Please respect your fellow passengers—following these rules helps make everyone’s ride more comfortable and pleasant.

 

Prohibited activities

The following are rules of conduct for the Authority’s transportation system and property. Unless previously authorized by the Authority, it is a violation of Ordinance 016-110 for any person to engage in the following prohibited conduct:

  Type of conduct Transit vehicles Other CTA property
1 Displaying or offering for sale, selling or distributing goods or services Prohibited Prohibited
2 Soliciting or begging for money or anything of value Prohibited Prohibited
3 Consuming any food or non-alcoholic beverages, excluding medicine Prohibited Allowed
4 Drinking alcoholic beverages or possessing open container of same Prohibited Prohibited
5 Using sound-producing devices or equipment (use of headphones allowed if output is inaudible to others) Prohibited Prohibited
6 Spitting Prohibited Prohibited
7 Willfully blocking the free movement or access of another person Prohibited Prohibited
8 Possessing luggage or personal items or large carts or dollies of a size or quantity that the passenger cannot manage on his or her own in one trip on or off CTA buses and train cars. Possessing luggage or personal items or large carts or dollies of a size or quantity that the passenger cannot on his or her own enter paid areas of rail stations in one trip Prohibited n/a
9 Possessing items that necessarily because of their size or quantity block entry and exit of passengers and/or movement through aisles and/or access to priority seating for seniors and customers with disabilities Prohibited Prohibited
10 Occupying more than one seat by placing objects, shoes or feet on adjoining seats Prohibited n/a
11 Interfering with CTA services by tampering with any equipment including but not limited to safety and emergency equipment, emergency alarms and control switches on CTA escalators, elevators, buses and trains or impeding the progress of a transit vehicle Prohibited Prohibited
12 Sleeping or dozing where such activity may interfere with CTA services Prohibited Prohibited
13 Crossing between the cars of a train or entering or remaining upon any track or right-of-way unless there is an emergency, and a CTA agent has directly instructed or authorized doing so Prohibited Prohibited
14 Loitering or storing personal property on a CTA bus or train. Loitering is defined as (1) remaining on the CTA system for more than one continuous trip without exiting the paid area and re-entering by paying a second fare or (2) riding on the system continuously in excess of two hours without exiting the system. Prohibited n/a
15 Loitering or storing personal property on all other CTA property except where authorized to do so n/a Sleeping or camping on CTA property and any other uses which are not related to transit and not otherwise authorized by law or CTA
16 Exposing one’s breast (except for breast feeding of infant), buttocks or genitals or performing any sex act Prohibited Prohibited
17 Urinating or defecating (except in a urinal or toilet intended for that purpose) or causing the presence of blood, urine, feces, vomit or other bodily fluids Prohibited Prohibited
18 Smoking including e-cigarettes. See Ordinance No. 014-60. Prohibited Prohibited
19 Alarming or disturbing others or causing others to fear for their safety or provoking a breach of the peace or being under the influence of alcohol, narcotics or other drugs or engaging in boisterous or unruly behavior that seriously inconveniences, annoys or alarms other reasonable persons in their vicinity Prohibited Prohibited
20 Engaging in harassment or sexual harassment or bullying. Harassment is defined as offensive behavior toward an individual because of his or her sex, race, color, national origin, religion, marital status, sexual orientation, transgender status, pregnancy, ancestry, age, military status, disability, genetic information or any other status protected by law. Sexual harassment is defined as unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature directed at a person of the same or opposite sex. Bullying is defined as abusive, repeated conduct that is threatening, humiliating or intimidating. Prohibited Prohibited
21 Gambling including use of shell games, sleight-of-hand or juggling trick or other games to cheat, defraud or unlawfully obtain money or other things of value Prohibited Prohibited
22 Littering including dumping, depositing, dropping, throwing, discarding, leaving, causing or permitting the dumping, depositing, dropping, throwing, discarding or leaving of litter Prohibited Prohibited
23 Distributing of advertisements or any other written materials or soliciting or petitioning Prohibited Prohibited in the paid areas and prohibited in the unpaid areas if blocking ingress or egress or the flow of traffic
24 Posting or affixing or painting or stamping any sign, notice, circular, handbill, placard, poster, card, advertisement or other device Prohibited Prohibited
25 Defacing, destroying, marking, cutting, etching or otherwise vandalizing any property owned by CTA including signage and advertisements thereon Prohibited Prohibited
26 Possessing any etching equipment or etching materials meaning any tool, device, equipment or substance including spray paint that can be used to make permanent marks on metal, glass, plastic, concrete or stone Prohibited Prohibited
27 Trespassing defined as any of the following: (1) entering CTA property after oral or written notice that such entry is forbidden; (2) entering into an area closed to public by gate, fence, wall or other barrier; (3) remaining on CTA property after receiving oral or written notice from any law enforcement officer or CTA employee or contractor to depart or (4) entering into the paid area of any CTA property without paying the required fare Prohibited Prohibited
28 Possessing or carrying any weapon including, but not limited to, guns, clubs, knives, stun guns, tasers and explosive devices. This does not apply to those individuals authorized under Section 5/24-2 of the Illinois Criminal Code to carry weapons onto transit or to pepper spray. Prohibited Prohibited
29 Possessing inflammables, acids, biohazardous materials, compressed gases (except medically required oxygen tanks) clothing or other possessions, materials or animals that have or are capable of producing strong offensive odors, explosion or fire or are likely to endanger persons or property. This includes empty or partially empty containers of oil, gas, petroleum products, paint or varnish. Prohibited Prohibited
30 Selling, bartering or exchanging for consideration any fare media issued by the CTA or fare media issued by the Regional Transit Authority under the Special Fare Program Prohibited Prohibited
31 Using Special Fare Program Ventra fare media issued to someone else to enter the CTA transit system or misrepresenting eligibility to obtain Special Fare Program privileges or continuing to exercise those privileges after eligibility has expired. Excessive use of a Special Fare Program Ventra fare media, which use is defined under the Ventra User Agreement Prohibited Prohibited
32 Paying a fare on behalf of another customer when such fare payment results in the customer paying less than he or she would otherwise have had to pay Prohibited Prohibited
33 Transporting animals except in a closed and secure small container designed for travel that is carried by one person and which can fit under seat or a service animal as defined in 49 CFR Section 37.3 Prohibited Prohibited
34 Skateboarding, roller skating, using a hover or hubber board, bicycle riding or rollerblading or use of another recreational transportation device Prohibited Prohibited
35 Failure to follow a lawful direction or request from a CTA employee, representative or security agent or police Prohibited Prohibited
36 Passing through, around, over or under any crossing gate or barrier at a railroad grade crossing while such gate is closed or is being opened or closed or remaining on or traversing a railroad track when an audible bell or clearly visible electric signal is operational warning of approach of train in violation of 625 ILCS 5/11-1011 n/a Prohibited

 

Penalties for violations

Any person who violates the rules is subject to any or all of the following penalties:

  • A fine not less than $300
  • To complete a period of supervision
  • To pay restitution when the violation involves damage to property
  • Community service for not less than 30 and not more than 120 hours
  • Immediate removal from CTA property
  • Suspended riding privileges
  • Arrest

 

For complete details, see Ordinance 016-110.

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