Seven buses from BC Transit’s provincial fleet are on temporary loan to Greater Victoria to avoid future cancellations and delays. The buses will be here until 80 new vehicles are added to the regional fleet in 2020. (File Photo)

BC Transit borrows buses from Interior to avoid trip cancellations in Greater Victoria

80 new buses arriving in Victoria in 2020

BC Transit has borrowed buses from the province’s interior to help with trip cancellations across Greater Victoria.

BC Transit communications manager Jonathon Dyck confirmed seven additional buses have been introduced to Greater Victoria as an interim measure to prevent the delays and route cancellations experienced by riders in September and October.

On Sept. 25, 20 routes were impacted by cancellations, which BC Transit chalked up to a shortage of vehicles.

READ ALSO: Riders up in arms after 20 transit routes affected by cancellations

“What we saw in September was that a lot of the trip cancellations were due to vehicles not being available,” Dyck says. “We do apologize to customers that that has had an impact on them, we know it does impact their ability to get to work or get to school.”

Traffic, crashes, construction and driver illness or unavailability also impacts routes but Dyck says that despite the cancellations, 99 per cent of BC Transit services have been in full operation in the region, with over 3,200 trips completed each week day.

“But we recognize that those statistics are meaningless if its your bus that is cancelled,” he says. “So we have been working hard to implement operational changes.”

The seven buses were brought in from Kelowna and the Central Fraser Valley to take pressure of the 304-bus fleet already operating in the region. The borrowed vehicles are two-year-old, standard 40-foot buses.

Dyck says they are temporary and will operate in Greater Victoria only until new vehicles arrive – 80 buses are being brought into Victoria in 2020, some of which will be compressed natural gas models. But only eight of the 2020 buses are add-ons to the region’s 304. The other 72 will be replacing older models.

“Our system right now has an average age of 12 years, by next year that should drop down to six,” Dyck says.

READ ALSO: BC Transit launches GPS bus tracking system across Greater Victoria

Even with a vehicle shortage, ridership has increased in Victoria. September 2019 saw 10 per cent more riders than September 2018. Dyck says bus lanes and service programs like the app NextRide might be to thank for the growing number of transit users.

“There has been improvements to the system and I think that’s what customers are seeing,” he says. “One of the big pieces is we want to be as on time as possible and that’s something we’re working to improve.”

BC Transit encourages riders use the NextRide app or sign up for alerts to stay on top of any changes to their route.



nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Sex workers march in downtown Victoria for Red Umbrella Day

Red umbrellas became a symbol of sex workers after an art installation in Italy

MLA Adam Olsen calls for ‘substantial’ changes in provincial economy

Green Party MLA also criticizes gap between government rhetoric and actions

Saanich Police praise altruistic local for donating hand-knitted toques

Saanich police officers dropped the toques off at two youth shelters

Camosun tech students showcase new inventions and local business partnerships

A laser beam that can map a room, an automated pest deterrence system that uses AI, and more

500 pounds of turkey served at Cool Aid community Christmas dinner

Annual dinner serves hundreds of community members

VIDEO: Success of wildlife corridors in Banff National Park has advocates wanting more

Demand for more highway protection escalated after seven elk were killed by a semi-trailer near Canmore

B.C. VIEWS: Hunger does not end with the season

Despite innovations in food distribution, the need is still there in B.C. communities

Sharks beat Canucks 4-2 to snap 6-game skid

Vancouver visits Vegas on Sunday

Fans sing Canadian anthem after sound system breaks at BMW IBSF World Cup

The Canadians in attendance made sure their team and flag were honoured on the podium

VIDEO: Fire destroys Big White Ski Resort chalet

Social media eulogies peg the property, nicknamed “The Pharamacy,” as both loved and hated

Prince George RCMP use bait packages to catch porch pirates over the holidays

First-in-Canada program with Amazon looks to combat parcel theft

Nanaimo mechanical engineer creates thief tracking program

Nanaimo Thief Tracking lets users plot and share information about thefts online

Mayor wants B.C. to institutionalize severely mental ill people who are homeless

Those suffering from mental health conditions, such as schizophrenia, need specialized care, mayor says

Five things of note from Trudeau’s mandate letters to his ministers

Some marching orders come from the Liberal Party’s campaign, while others are new additions

Most Read