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San Luis Obispo modifies 2022 bus schedule amid staff shortage

slo bus.JPG
Posted at 6:39 AM, Feb 01, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-01 09:40:47-05

Kevin Sargent has been using San Luis Obispo public transportation for about 20 years and still relies on it to complete daily tasks.

"I like to be independent at 70 years old. That's the way I was brought up," said community member, Kevin Sargent.

Sargent used to take the 1B bus route to Vons and the 2B bus route to Ralphs, but service to both routes have been suspended.

"I notice a big change in the bus schedules and stuff like that," said Sargent.

The city of San Luis Obispo released a revised and modified bus schedule for 2022 altering and suspending some routes due to a labor shortage. The schedule went into effect on Jan. 30.

"We've gone without 1A, 1B and 2B for almost 6 months to a year now," said Sargent.

Changes have been made to the schedules of the 3A, 4A, and 3B buses.

Tripper services and trolley services are also suspended until further notice.

"It's hurting a lot of the older people," said Sargent.

Seniors we spoke to say these bus route changes even affect how they get their groceries.

Now that service for the 1B bus route has been suspended, he walks 8 blocks to get his groceries at Vons, but 8 blocks is no simple task after surgery. Sargent recently had left hernia surgery and fractured one of his knees, as a result he sometimes has to walk with a cane.

“You hit a crack in the sidewalk wrong with a cane—what's going to happen to you?” said Sargent.

Isaac Brandt used to use public transportation when living in Seattle. He says the alteration of routes and suspension of service will have the biggest impact those who need it most.

"Folks who are low income and folks who, by virtue of that, rely on public transport," said community member, Isaac Brandt.

Commuters hope the bus routes will return to regular service soon.

"Bring this up to the city council. Make an incentive to get bus drivers and keep bus drivers," said Brandt.

According to SLO Transit, services will be reinstated as drivers are recruited and trained.