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'The service is completely substandard:' Ottawa's mayor reacts to LRT shutdown

Watson told Rogers tv that Ottawan's should have confidence in the system because there will be independent safety checks before returning to service.
2021-09-20 light rail lrt derailment o-train oc transpo 2
Derailed O-Train, September 20, 2021. Ryan Lowe/ CityNews

Two derailments on Ottawa's light rail Confederation Line in the past six weeks has the city's mayor quite frustrated.

Rideau Transit Maintenance (RTM) officials are warning that it could take up to three weeks to get O-Train services back up and running after its latest derailment.

"I'm not the type to set my hair on fire and say cancel the contract and get a new company to come in. I'm still a believer in light rail. We need it. We just need to make sure we have a much better service than what RTG, RTM and Alstom have delivered," said Jim Watson. 

The mayor said residents should have confidence in the system because there will be independent safety checks but he also acknowledged that the system has failed too many times and the service is substandard.

"I'm very disappointed in the consortium and the fact that this has happened twice in a six-week period," Watson said. 

The mayor also announced that he will be meeting with senior officials with RTM and Alstom in order to "hold their feet to the fire." 

A full assessment of track and train damage is expected to be conducted on Tuesday.

Listen to the full interview with Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson with Mark Sutcliffe on Rogers tv:



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