PHILADELPHIA - Months after SEPTA and the transit workers union came to a 25th hour agreement on a new contract to avoid a strike, the transit authority says it's now facing a bus driver shortage that has swelled since the summer.
SEPTA says they are down about 145 bus drivers which is an increase of over 80 from the summer. Meanwhile, riders have reported longer wait times at the bus stop and abandonment.
"On the [SEPTA] app, it says they'll be here in 3 minutes, and they'll wind up coming in like 10, 20 minutes," one rider said.
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Transit leaders are grappling with recent retirements and a lower number of job applications by holding larger training sessions every three weeks. A course that starts Monday will help potential bus drivers get the required license for the job.
SEPTA Spokesperson Andrew Busch told FOX 29 that the new training classes hopes to add 28-30 bus drivers.
The transit authority said it isn't immune to outside job competition, with many potential drivers electing to work for UPS or Amazon. SEPTA plans to hold a number of job fairs to attract candidates to fill the open positions.