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Cold weather, Bombardier delays affecting TTC streetcar service

CityNews | posted Wednesday, Jan 3rd, 2018

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The recent stretch of frigid weather in Toronto is having a crippling effect on streetcar service, with 19 older-model streetcars unable to operate on Tuesday because of the cold.

One day last week, 30 streetcars were rendered useless, forcing buses along nearby routes to fill the sudden, and significant, void.

“The old legacy streetcars that we have … are about 37 years old now,” said TTC spokesman Stuart Green. “They use systems … that are failing in the cold weather.”

Compounding the problem are massive delivery delays from Bombardier. If the manufacturer had stuck with its initial promise, the TTC claims we’d have double the amount of new streetcars in service. Instead, we currently only have 57.

“Every new low-floor (streetcar) we get in service helps us with dealing with the breakdowns we’re experiencing,” added Green.

Mayor Tory’s office released a statement Tuesday saying: “The Mayor — like everyone who uses the TTC — is beyond frustrated with the delays in getting new streetcars from Bombardier. These delays are having a real impact on the TTC and its riders and this is yet another example. All the more reason why Bombardier needs to get on with delivering these new streetcars as soon as it possibly can.”

Despite the numerous streetcars taken out of service, the TTC said customer service wait times weren’t significantly affected.

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