By Jesse Sarles

(CBS4) – The omicron surge is starting to affect RTD services with a worker shortage causing the public transit agency to make many changes to their routes. In a 3 week span, 77 new COVID cases were reported across all of their operations.

General manager Debra Johnson says a “creative approach” is being used to cover open driver shifts, and there are new incentives to get more bus drivers, rail operators, mechanics and technicians. A $4,000 hiring bonus is on the table to bring in new employees and to help keep operations afloat.

“We are doing our best to maintain service within our existing resource constraints. … While RTD’s Operations team is working as creatively as possible in its approach to covering open shifts, our ‘people power’ is being severely affected by the prevalence of the omicron coronavirus variant,” Johnson said in a prepared statement.

“We know this situation creates difficulty for our customers, and we apologize for any inconvenience they are experiencing due to these circumstances that are beyond our control.”

Jesse Sarles