Formed in March of 1936, the
Ohio River Motor Coach Company (ORMC) was certified by the PSC to operate a single line 20
mile line between Aliquippa and Pittsburgh via Ambridge, Sewickley, Haysville and
Emsworth. The owners of the new company, Stanley and Frank Ference, originally applied to
operate deluxe service in the Ohio River valley over several routes but this was denied
but the Pittsburgh line in the application was certified.
This was not the Ference's
first venture into operating a bus line. Prior to creating the ORMC, they operated the
Ference Brothers Bus Lines which operated a single route between Carnegie and Bridgeville.
This line was sold to Penn Bus Lines in 1928 and the Ference Brothers company went out of
new ORMC route was heavily restricted along much of its line as other operators already
had rights for service in many of the areas along the routing. Only between the western
border of Emsworth and Sewickley was ORMC unrestricted against local traffic and this area
was rather unpopulated at the time.
World War II, restrictions were lifted in the Woodlawn & Southern (W&S) territory
as W&S was unable to meet the wartime demands for service. Restrictions were put back
in place after the end of the war.
The route itself took a
little over an hour to operate one way. As per to the restrictions in place, the route
operated more as a commuter line rather than a transit line and the buses used on the line
reflected this. ORMC buses were transits in a suburban configuration (GM Old Looks in a
suburban configuration were still classed as transit coaches), with interior parcel racks,
no standee windows and all with forward facing seats. None of the buses in the ORMC fleet
had under floor storage bays or center doors, including the New Look suburban
coaches which had a
true suburban classification. Some of the buses prior to 1950 did have standee windows but
the standard for ORMC appeared to be not to have them.
was rather good at ORMC and the buses were always in good shape. As the route was more a
commuter run, the lack of constant stop and go operation helped dramatically in minimizing
wear and tear on the buses. The ORMC only had this one route, which didn't change
entire history except for a couple of minor routing changes in Downtown Pittsburgh.
the PUC approved the transfer of the ORMC rights to PAT in 1964, many of the restrictions
imposed on the line still remained in place as this was an out of county route. The only
restriction able to be lifted by the PUC was the Pittsburgh to Emsworth restriction as the
PRCo routes, that the lifted restriction covered, were all part of the same system now.