Sizable as that number is, the 11 trainees looking to become full-fledged locomotive engineers are hoping to take it in stride. They’re members of a unique pilot class, comprising assistant conductors looking to build on their experience to move up to the driver’s seat.
“This is a very special class,” said NJ Transit president and CEO Kevin Corbett. “Working collaboratively with the Federal Railroad Administration, we used an innovative approach to the training schedule — while still meeting the curriculum’s rigorous requirements. For our customers, this means more locomotive engineers on the job as soon as possible.”
Gov. Phil Murphy’s administration also announced a $500 million bond, issued by the EDA through a public market transaction, to fund the agency’s purchase of 600 new buses and 17 new locomotives. Lowering the average age of the fleet should result in fewer breakdowns and failures across the system.
This graduating class will bring the total number of engineers that have joined NJ Transit since the beginning of 2018 to 30. The agency currently has eight engineer-training classes running concurrently. That brings the total number of engineer trainees enrolled in the program to more than 100.