NJ Transit commuters may face another ‘Summer of Hell’ with train engineer shortage

NEW JERSEY — Is it going to be another “Summer of Hell”?

Threats of a critical engineering shortage are preventing the New Jersey Transit to get back on track.

Gov. Phil Murphy (D-NJ) and state officials acknowledged the shortage on Tuesday while pushing for an additional $100 million in NJ Transit funding.

“We’re building this pool up as aggressively as we can, but we’re not gonna [sic] be in the promise land by Memorial Day,” Murphy said.

The contest testing positive train control technology also pulls engineers off their regular shifts.

An NJ Transit engineering shortage could spell major delays this summer.

The agency is only graduating eight new engineers in May, and another 25 to 30 will graduate in October.

The problem will only become worse with employees taking summer vacations and needing time to test positive train control technology.

“May I just say I believe the engineering class size is more of a summer risk than positive train control is that fair to say? Yes.”

Murphy also tried to bring a positive note by announcing the Atlantic City line and Princeton branch will reopen in May as he tries to get the agency back on track from its historic funding cuts under the Christie administration.

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