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Metro operators work long hours, new report shows

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Many Metro train operators are severely overworked, a new report by Metro finds.

(Photo: Jay Westcott)

Some employees are logging as many as 112 hours a week. Riders were concerned about the news, especially when it comes to train operators.

“I know how drained I am after working for 10 or 11 hours, and I would imagine that it would be tough to operate a train under the same circumstances,” said Metro rider Adam Morris.

The new report documenting the excessive overtime shows some employees on the clock for 15 hours or more. Metro officials say train operators get an extended break during the day, in between working the morning and evening rush hours.

"Cumulatively you're still on the job for 10 15 hours, no I don't see where that would make a difference,” a rider said.

Metro officials implemented a 14-hour workday cap, the first of its kind, they say. Unlike railroads and buses, there are no such regulations on the transit agency.

"It’s weird because truck drivers can't do more than 11 hours on the road, so its kind of interesting how that works with Metro,” a rider said.

Transit authorities say 98 percent of train operators already work less than 14 hours a day and that the lengthy hours are clocked by technicians and track repairmen.

The agency plans to formally limit the workday to 16 hours per day for all jobs before putting the 14-hour workday cap in place by the end of 2012.

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