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More than two dozen train trips canceled Friday as RTD continues to deal with operator shortage

Posted at 6:03 AM, Nov 08, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-08 19:40:43-05

DENVER — More than two dozen train trips were canceled Friday morning as the Regional Transportation District continued to deal with a widespread shortage of operators.

As of 6 a.m., RTD was listing 37 canceled trips across the C, D, E, F, H and R lines.

Trains that are canceled Friday include:

C Line
Northbound, Mineral to Union Station: 5:41 a.m., 6:26 a.m., 8:26 a.m.
Southbound, Union Station to Mineral: 6:19 a.m., 7:04 a.m., 9:04 a.m.

D Line
Northbound, Mineral to 18th/California: 4:17 a.m., 7:02 a.m.
Southbound, Englewood Station to Mineral: 3:56 a.m.
Southbound, 18th/Stout to Mineral: 4:52 a.m., 7:37 a.m.

E Line
Northbound, Ridgegate to Union Station: 5:33 a.m., 7:33 a.m., 9:42 a.m., 11:42 a.m.
Southbound, Louisiana Pearl to Ridgegate: 4:45 a.m.
Southbound, Union Station to Ridgegate: 6:28 a.m., 8:28 a.m., 10:37 a.m., 12:37 p.m.

F Line
Northbound, Ridgegate to 18th/California: 5:42 a.m., 7:42 a.m.
Southbound, Louisiana Pearl to Ridgegate: 4:54 a.m.
Southbound, 18th/Stout to Ridgegate: 6:34 a.m.

H Line
Northbound, Florida to 18th/California: 6:42 a.m., 8:27 a.m., 10:12 a.m., 11:57 a.m., 1:42 p.m.
Southbound, Louisiana Pearl to Florida: 6:11 a.m.
Southbound, 18th/Stout to Florida: 7:28 a.m., 9:13 a.m., 10:58 a.m., 12:43 p.m.
RTD the H Line trains will only be running twice an hour, with departure wait times of up to 45 minutes. It says riders going to or from Dayton, Nine Mile, Iliff and Florida stations can take the E or F lines with a transfer to the R Line at Belleview or Peoria, or with the A Line at Peoria.

R Line
Northbound, Ridgegate to Peoria: 4:56 a.m., 7:22 a.m.
Southbound, Peoria to Ridgegate: 6:08 a.m.

In October, RTD said it had been short nearly 50 train operators and nearly 90 bus drivers for months and many operators have had to work 6-day weeks as a result.

The agency presented a plan to its board that would temporarily reduce service on some lines to deal with the shortage, but the proposal was met with strong opposition.

RTD continues to weigh its options and is seeking public input this month. Click here for more information.

RTD said in a news release Friday afternoon that the afternoon commute "is expected to continue as planned except for the handful of trips already canceled for the early evening."

"Operator call-outs typically increase on Fridays and Mondays, further reducing the workforce available to deliver service," RTD said in the release. "RTD management and union leadership continue to work on ways to soften elements of the union collective bargaining agreement contract to allow flexibility in how to use the workforce to fill canceled trips. Staff is also working to notify riders of expected canceled routes in advance so they can plan their day."

Data obtained by Denver7 Friday showed that so far this year, there have been 62 new light rail operators hired and 61 who have left RTD, for a net gain of one operator. The data shows RTD has hired 252 bus operators and had 215 bus operator separations, for a net gain of 37. Three light rail operators left in October and none were hired.

RTD said a new class of nearly 50 rail and bus operators and mechanics will begin training on Monday.

"We understand the impacts that canceled runs have on our passengers and we are doing everything we can to minimize those impacts," said RTD COO Michael Ford.

Be sure to check RTD’s website or sign up for rider alerts to stay updated on the latest delays and cancellations.