Detroit mobility company offering free rides to seniors, disabled individuals to get COVID-19 tested

A new transportation business in Detroit is offering free rides to people who are elderly or have disabilities who want to get tested for COVID-19.

IXR Mobility, a non-emergency medical transportation company, is partnering with a local nonprofit to make it easier for people unable to travel to get tested.

The new service was made possible by a PlanetM mobility grant from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. 

Founded by Ray Smith, a native of Detroit and co-founder of IXR Mobility, the company's partnership with Blast Detroit will use an app to schedule free rides to COVID-19 testing sites. 

IXR Mobility, a Detroit transportation company offers free rides to seniors and individuals with disabilities to get tested for COVID-19

As coronavirus cases exploded around the state and businesses buckled down for another lockdown, Detroit sought to expand testing to as many of its residents as possible. 

Mayor Mike Duggan argued during a press conference last week the best way to combat the spread was to test everyone, so even those who aren't exhibiting any symptoms but carry the virus will refrain from further spreading it.

It's still seniors and those who are immunocompromised that face the greatest threat from the virus, however. As showcased over the spring, it was residents from the majority-Black city of Detroit that suffered the worst. 

Blast Detroit is also accepting donations to offset the cost and is taking requests for volunteer drivers.

Seniors and individuals with disabilities who live in zip codes 48207, 48203, 48201, or 48226 are eligible for free rides. To schedule a ride, download the IXR Mobility App or call (248) 838-0423.