Class Is Part of a Push to Rebuild Front Line Workforce in Aftermath of Pandemic-Induced Hiring Freeze Last Year
New Bus Operators Join 355 Bus Operators and 602 Train Operators and Conductors Who Completed Training in 2021
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) announced that 50 newly trained bus operators graduated following their successful completion of training at the Zerega Training Center in Castle Hill in the Bronx.
These operators will help New York City Transit (NYCT) tackle recent crew shortage challenges and bolster the frequency of bus service. This marked the formal end of six weeks of intensive training that began in November 2021 and comes just days after the MTA assumed operation of the SIM23 and SIM24 express bus routes, giving the Authority full operation of the Staten Island Express Bus Network. The two express routes provide service to Midtown Manhattan from Annadale, Huguenot and Prince’s Bay, with five morning trips and six afternoon trips on each route. Timetables can be found here.
“This new class of bus operators will help us reach our goal of delivering thousands of scheduled bus trips, including along the newly added SIM23 and SIM24 express routes,” said New York City Transit Interim President Craig Cipriano. “We are focused on increasing class sizes and improving recruiting so we can move more operators into the system more quickly to help us ensure that buses arrive more frequently."
“Riders who depend on buses to get them to work, school and appointments deserve reliable service, and these operators will help address the staffing challenges we’ve experienced,” said Acting President at the MTA Bus Company and Senior Vice President at New York City Transit's Department of Buses Frank Annicaro. “Bus operators continue to keep the city moving and I am excited to welcome this new group to our team.”
The new employees join the 355 bus operators, 302 train operators and 320 conductors who recently completed their training, and the hundreds of NYCT workers who are expected to be onboarded in the months ahead — part of a deliberate effort by the MTA to rapidly grow the number of bus operators, subway train operators and conductors. A hiring freeze, necessitated by a fiscal crisis that developed during the pandemic, depleted the ranks of bus operators with many veteran workers retiring or leaving their frontline posts.