Bus Driver Absenteeism Blamed for Reduction of Service

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(Sacramento, CA)
Wednesday, January 26, 2005
Spokesman Paul Rapp says the Transit District is eliminating or merging about seven percent of the county and city bus routes for six months beginning February 13th, because too many of the 142 drivers are missing work on a regular basis, leaving riders stranded. RAPP :05—On any given day one out of four of our operators who are scheduled to work don’t come in. Rapp says the cutbacks are designed to affect the fewest number of riders as possible. RAPP :07—What we’ve looked at are times and days where we have the least amount of ridership and cut runs on those days. The contract with the Amalgamated Transit Union allows each driver to miss at least 12 days when they notify the agency in advance. They can miss another 12 days without informing their supervisors they aren’t going to be at work. Rapp says the District hopes to reach an agreement with the union that would reduce unscheduled absences. A representative of the union did not immediately return a phone call. Bob Hensley KXJZ News.