TransLink looking to hire hundreds of new drivers by the end of 2017

TransLink looking to hire hundreds of new drivers by the end of 2017

TransLink to hire hundreds of new bus drivers

470 additional employees to be behind the wheel by the end of the year

TransLink is planning to hire 470 new drivers by the end of 2017 as part of the first phase of improvements in its 10-year regional transportation plan.

The new hires – 144 bus drivers and 26 shuttle drivers –will be on the road by April, with the remaining 314 bus drivers and 156 shuttle drivers ready to roll by the end of the year. (Shuttles are smaller-size buses).

This will be TransLink’s single largest hiring drive since the 2010 Olympics.

While the recruitment blitz is is part of Phase One of TransLink’s transportation plan, an aging Baby Boomer population is also a factor. With 50 per cent of the current bus drivers aged 50 years or older, the idea is to begin preparing for large numbers of employees planning to retire over the next few years.

As part of TransLink’s expansion, more buses will be added to overcrowded routes and new routes will be created.

The south-of-Fraser region will see an additional 56,000 service hours and by the end of the year. Areas such as Clayton Heights and Morgan Creek will begin to see additional service.

In order to accommodate the rush of new drivers, TransLink will be bringing in 171 new buses beginning early next year, with funding coming from the federal gas tax.

“The bus service improvements will start in April and they’ll be rolled out more or less in succession consistently every three months thereafter over the next three years,” said TransLink CEO Kevin Desmond. “The first priority is putting additional buses and additional frequency on overcrowded routes.”

In order to immediately increase service, TransLink plans to keep some of the existing buses in service slightly longer than usual as a short-term bridge until the new buses hit the roads.

“TransLink generally keeps its buses anywhere from 14-18 years, and I’m pretty confident that (the maintenance department) will be able to keep those buses on the road so we can provide relief to our customers,” Desmond said.

With the Surrey-Langley LRT (L-Line), TransLink now has the funding to do all the engineering and design work, which should be finished by 2018.

“While approval of Phase One is worth celebrating, it is only the first step in delivering the transportation solutions our region needs,” said Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner, vice-chair of the Mayors’ Council. “Funding commitments from the provincial and federal governments must be secured for Phase Two in order to keep critically important projects like the Surrey-Langley LRT and Broadway extension on track.”

As Metro Vancouver’s regional transportation authority responsible for transit throughout the region, TransLink currently employs more than 3,500 operators.

Surrey North Delta Leader

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Surrey School District building. (File photo)
‘We’re in a financial lockdown’: Surrey school district working with $40M budget deficit

District, board points to lack of immigration for new student enrolment

Surrey-raised Tetsuro Shigematsu wrote and stars in “1 Hour Photo,” a Vancouver Asian Canadian Theatre’s production to be presented online by Surrey Civic Theatres on April 23-24. (submitted photo/Raymond Shum)
‘This Japanese kid who grew up in Whalley’ thrilled to return with acclaimed ‘1 Hour Photo’

City’s Digital Stage to show Tetsuro Shigematsu’s solo portrait of Mas Yamamoto

Steve Serbic, assistant chief of operations for the Surrey Fire Service, has written a book, “The Unbroken” delving into his struggles with post-traumatic stress. (Photo: Lauren Collins)
Surrey firefighter writes book to ‘be part of the change’ in stigma around post-traumatic stress

‘The Unbroken’ details Steve Serbic’s childhood, career and journey dealing with mental health issues

Everett Cummings in a tribute video posted to
Mechanic’s death at Surrey dock results in $200K fine for company, union says

Photos of rally outside Surrey court posted on ILWU’s ‘Kill A Worker Go To Jail’ Facebook page

Fish processing workers fillet farm-raised salmon in Surrey B.C. Photo courtesy BCSFA
Discovery Islands salmon farm removal impacts jobs in B.C.’s Lower Mainland: report

The City of Surrey is the hub of the salmon farming industry in Metro Vancouver

Demonstrators at the legislature on April 14 called on the province to decriminalize drug possession and provide widespread access to regulated safe supply across B.C. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)
Rally calls for decriminalization, safe supply on 5th anniversary of overdose emergency declaration

From 2016 to the end of February, 7,072 British Columbians died due to overdose

(Government of Canada)
Liberal MP caught stark naked during House of Commons video conference

William Amos, in Quebec, appeared on the screens of his fellow members of Parliament completely naked

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Feb. 1, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count jumps to 1,168 Wednesday, nearly 400 in hospital

Now 120 coronavirus patients in intensive care, six more deaths

Moss covered branches are seen in the Avatar Old Growth Forest near Port Renfrew on Vancouver Island, B.C. Thursday, Sept. 29, 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. blockades aimed at protecting old-growth forests reveal First Nation split

Two Pacheedaht chiefs say they’re ‘concerned about the increasing polarization over forestry activities’ in the territory

Richmond RCMP Chief Superintendent Will Ng said, in March, the force received a stand-out number of seven reports of incidents that appeared to have “racial undertones.” (Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
‘Racially motivated’ incidents on the rise in B.C’s 4th largest city: police

Three incidents in Richmond are currently being invested as hate crimes, says RCMP Chief Superintendent Will Ng

A still from the video taken of a violent arrest on May 30, 2020 in downtown Kelowna. (File)
Kelowna Mountie charged with assault for caught-on-camera violent arrest

Const. Siggy Pietrzak was filmed punching a suspected impaired driver at least 10 times during an arrest

A screenshot from a Nuu-chah-nulth healing song and performance created in collaboration between Hjalmer Wenstob and Timmy Masso. (Screenshot from YouTube)
VIDEO: Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation brothers produce COVID-19 healing song

Hjalmer Wenstob and Timmy Masso share dance and inspiration.

Health Canada headquarters in Ottawa. (Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press)
Health Canada releases guidelines for reducing COVID-19 transmission at home

Improve indoor air quality by opening up your windows and doors, among the encouraged ventilation measures

Most Read