EXO considers itself ready for the start of the school year despite the lack of drivers |  Vodrel Solange - Numedia

EXO considers itself ready for the start of the school year despite the lack of drivers | Vodrel Solange – Numedia

During a press conference held in virtual mode, EXO’s General Manager, Sylvain Yale, gave an update on the labor shortage the company is dealing with on the eve of the start of the new school year.

On Monday, August 22, EXO will adopt their fall schedule, the season that always takes place under the adaptation sign. “It is a new routine for students who go to school or for newcomers to the district who, for example, will go to work for the first time by bus after returning from vacation. This year, this will be our motto, especially if it is due to the labor shortage in the school transport sector and the arrival of contracts The exchange with carriers has affected our services.It worries us greatly and we are following the file closely.Summarize it from the start.

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On a daily basis, EXO provides bus transportation services in 61 municipalities on the northern and southern shores. For the train, service is offered to 82 member regions of the Community Metropolitan Montreal (CMM).

This translates to 5,300 departures each day on Tajin (North and South), which are completed daily by approximately 1,000 drivers. “These are drivers hired by the private carriers we work with. The quality target to be achieved is 99.6% of planned departures that must be carried out on a daily basis. Currently, we are at 98.4%. This represents about 53 departures per day, on El Tajin, which has not They are implemented on our network. We want to take action to reach our goal”he added.

Take measures in motion

Mr. Yale noted that the labor shortage affecting the public transportation sector is not limited to this industry. Taxi, truck and evening transportation services, as well as sectors other than transportation, have been affected for several months due to a lack of human resources.

“We are currently at the stage where we have to search for available vehicles and drivers outside the county because they are very rare. There are no magic solutions and the situation has worsened since this spring. Since April, we have been proactive and implemented measures to address this shortage.”confirmed it.

The first is to add telecom companies to strengthen and support those who serve the network and who have had difficulty doing so due to staff shortages. This was particularly the case in Saint Jolie.

The second is to adjust schedules by reducing the frequency of service, while increasing vehicle volumes.

The third is to develop the functionality of the Chrono app to notify users as quickly as possible when services are down. People understand the difficulties we face, but they want to report the changes that affect them. In this app, you can choose your routes and receive an alert in case of cancellations or delays. So users can quickly plan Plan B.” He pointed out.

Finally, EXO used all of its communication channels to inform residents of available locations with their carriers. Currently, there is a shortage of 70-80 drivers to service our network. The situation is more dangerous or endangered in some places. For example, at the Sud-Ouest circuit, the required number of drivers is reached, but if one of them gets sick, we are not immune to a one-time or occasional outage. »

Mr. Yale also confirmed that he has written to the Departments of Labor and Transportation to speed up the process of recognizing drivers’ licenses for immigrants and speeding up the process of issuing work visas.

Finally, a work unit made up of community stakeholders, elected officials and users will also be established in the coming weeks to find concrete solutions.

One solution could be for carriers to offer to pay for training for a Class 2 bus driving license. Currently, it costs more than $2000 to obtain this permit, which can be a hindrance for many people who want to re-orientate themselves in this field. He concludes that wages range from $20 to $24 an hour in this industry.

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