10/21/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 10/21/2021 11:33
October 21, 2021KEARNY - Governor Phil Murphy, NJDOT Commissioner and NJ TRANSIT Board Chair Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti and NJ TRANSIT President & CEO Kevin S. Corbett today recognized NJ TRANSIT's latest Locomotive Engineer training class for finalizing their formal classroom training and passing the Northeast Operating Rules of Advisory Committee (NORAC) and physical characteristics exams. The addition of this new class with 14 graduates means NJ TRANSIT has succeeded in adding 127 new locomotive engineers to its roster since Governor Murphy took office in 2018. This is the fourth graduating class of locomotive engineers in 2021. Previous graduation ceremonies were held in January, April and June.
"At the start of our Administration, we took over an NJ TRANSIT that was hobbled by years of dysfunction, underfunding, and a lack of strategic planning," said Governor Murphy. "Four years later, NJ TRANSIT has 127 new locomotive engineers, completed PTC, and drastically improved metrics across the board. New Jersey commuters are benefitting every day from the reforms, revamps, and rebuilding that we have undertaken. I look forward to the future service of these dedicated engineers as part of a new era at NJ TRANSIT."
"Since Governor Murphy took office in 2018, his administration has made it a priority to provide NJ TRANSIT with the necessary tools to ensure its customers arrive at their destinations safely and efficiently," said New Jersey Department of Transportation Commissioner and NJ TRANSIT Board Chair Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti. "We congratulate this current class for their commitment to NJ TRANSIT and its customers."
"This class began its instruction right at the onset of the pandemic in March of 2020, and we very well could have suspended all locomotive engineer training at that time," said NJ TRANSIT President & CEO Kevin S. Corbett. "Instead, we stayed the course by quickly shifting a number of the training program's elements online. As a result, today we have a full roster of locomotive engineers, and a full pipeline of trainees, providing a more reliable commute for our customers - just what our region needs as riders are returning to the system."
The class of 14 engineer trainees will complete their field training and begin their final check rides later this month. The trainees completed a rigorous 78-week long program and passed extensive testing, including a final exam of more than 800 questions.
This class brings the total number of new engineers that have joined NJ TRANSIT since 2018 to 127 and brings the total active roster of engineers to 404. A full roster consists of a minimum of 390 engineers.
Since 2018 when Governor Murphy took office, NJ TRANSIT has graduated 11 classes of locomotive engineers - more classes then have graduated in the previous five years combined. The next locomotive engineer training class is set to graduate in April of 2022.
"Congratulations to NJT's 11th class of locomotive engineers. This is the 4th class to graduate and enter into the workforce this year, with 14 engineers joining the ranks. This is a major accomplishment," said Senator Patrick Diegnan, Chair of the Senate Transportation Committee. "This next generation of engineers will help enhance this country's transportation systems--which is an integral part of our day to day lives--something many of us tend to forget. We are extremely thankful for the hard work that these graduates have put in towards their educations and anticipate their future contributions."
"NJ TRANSIT's locomotive engineers play an important role in ensuring that our public transport system remains safe and dependable. As ridership increases with statewide returns to offices, it is more important than ever that NJ TRANSIT has a full roster of highly trained engineers to keep our trains running on time," said Assemblyman Daniel Benson, Chair of the Assembly Transportation and Independent Authorities Committee. "Congratulations to today's graduates for successfully completing this rigorous training program. It is my hope that the work they do will benefit countless commuters and other riders throughout New Jersey."
"Governor Murphy's commitment to rebuilding NJ TRANSIT has been highly visible in all parts of the organization, including in hiring and training 11 classes of engineers," said Jerome Johnson, General President and Chairman of SMART-TD Local 60. "I congratulate these newly-trained engineers on their accomplishments."
In addition to addressing the engineer shortage, NJ TRANSIT under the leadership of the Murphy Administration, has made a host of improvements throughout the transportation system available at www.njtransit.com/progress.IMPROVING SERVICE, RELIABILITY & SAFETY