Cuts and cancellations keep coming

First Aberdeen is withdrawing back roads service 8; campaigners say this will leave 21 bus stops unserved. Wright Streetlite DF 63196 passes through the city centre on the way to the Royal Infirmary in summer 2019.

Operators continue to face significant challenges in trying to provide services against a background of driver shortages and increasing costs.

National Express West Midlands has told customers it is 7% short of a full complement of drivers, causing delays and cancellations, and says “we are sincerely sorry if we let you down”. It has a ten point plan to improve matters, including pay and shift improvements, increasing its training capacity, and getting office-based staff to drive.

In a similar message, Lothian MD Sarah Boyd said: “I know that our service isn’t always delivering for our customers as it should be right now and I’m sorry.

“We are running an extensive recruitment campaign, we’ve evolved our training programme, we are adding new benefits to our employment offering, and we are working hard to modernise rotas so that we can offer a better work/life balance.” She also appealed for customers not to take out their frustrations on drivers, saying: “They are doing their very best in incredibly difficult circumstances.”

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