Kingston Transit temporarily reducing service due to staff shortages

Kingston Transit says it is temporarily reducing service on some routes due to staffing shortages.

“Effective Thursday, July 21, Kingston Transit will temporarily reduce service on select routes in order to continue to provide high-quality, efficient service for the whole of the transit system,” Kingston Transit said in a release. “Staffing shortages, which have impacted many industries, are contributing to short-term service reductions.”

Kingston Transit said it is working to recruit more drivers to restore services to pre-pandemic levels. “As new operators are added, service will be restored to affected routes,” the municipal service said.

For context, as of March 2020, Kingston Transit employed 155 people. As of today, 151 people are on staff.

“The frontline shortages, which Kingston Transit is currently experiencing, are not unique and can be attributed to interdepartmental moves, retirement, employee leaves, and day-to-day fluctuations in workforce as staff take their entitled leaves. However, the City has been successful in its efforts to stabilize the situation,” Kingston Transit said in email correspondence. “Since May 2021, 36 new operators have joined the team. Efforts to recruit more operators continue. In the interim, by reducing service on some routes we can adjust staff resources to provide more consistent service and avoid last minute cancellations.”

“Reducing service is a difficult decision and it is not something we would do unless absolutely necessary,” said Jeremy DaCosta, Director of Kingston Transit. “However, we need to consolidate some schedules to ensure consistent service across our entire transit network,” he continued.

According to Kingston Transit, the impacted routes will be:

Route 4: will provide hourly service Monday to Saturday. The Sunday schedule will not be affected. Route 4 will depart from the Downtown Transfer Point at 15 minutes past the hour and the Cataraqui Centre Transfer Point at 45 minutes past the hour.

Route 11: will provide hourly service Monday to Saturday. The Sunday schedule will not be affected. Route 11 trips will depart from the Cataraqui Centre Transfer Point at 45 minutes past the hour and the Kingston Centre Transfer Point at 15 minutes past the hour.

Route 12: will provide hourly service Monday to Saturday. The Sunday schedule will not be affected. Route 12 trips will depart from the Kingston Centre Transfer Point at 45 minutes past the hour and CFB Kingston at 15 minutes past the hour.

Route: 15 will provide hourly service Monday to Saturday. The Sunday schedule will not be affected. Route 15 trips will depart Reddendale at 15 minutes past the hour, Cataraqui Centre Transfer Point to Cataraqui Woods on the hour and Cataraqui Centre Transfer Point to Reddedale at 30 minutes past the hour.

“While this service reduction is not ideal, the current team of transit operators has gone above and beyond to help stabilize service. We thank each of our drivers for their dedication and commitment to their work and to Kingston Transit riders,” said DaCosta.

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