Greyhound pull-out a shock, but not a surprise

CS_p5greyhound020

CS_p5greyhound020

That's when Will Baker, formerly known as Vince Li, stabbed and beheaded Tim McLean aboard a Greyhound bus in Manitoba.

Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Claire Trevena said replacement options for the bus system are being explored.

The end of service will mean about 415 jobs are cut, Stuart Kendrick, senior vice-president of Greyhound Canada, said Monday at the Greyhound station in Calgary.

She cited testimony already given at the ongoing national inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls, where witnesses have talked at length about a chronic lack of transportation in more remote regions of the country. Ridership in B.C. had declined 46 per cent since 2010 and the company was incurring losses of $35,000 a day on its passenger service, it said.

In a statement, the company called the decision "regrettable", blaming it on declining ridership in rural communities, increased competition from subsidized national and inter-regional passenger transportation services, the entry of low-priced carriers, regulatory constraints, and increased vehicle travel.

Western's Canada's transportation ministers say they will be looking to the federal government for assistance, following a meeting to talk about Greyhound's decision to withdraw service.

That attitude doesn't jibe with Flin Flon NDP MLA Tom Lindsey, who said sometimes it is up to the government to provide services for people even if they can't be delivered profitably.

The days of catching a Greyhound Bus in Alberta are numbered. "It shouldn't come as a surprise that we've had problems but there was no funding commitment at that time", he said.

As Greyhound gets ready to pull its service out of Western Canada, we're getting a better picture of how much the Saskatchewan Transportation Company (STC) wind-down cost the province.

The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs said its citizens rely on Greyhound "heavily" - especially for medical appointments.

All routes in Ontario and Quebec will continue unchanged, aside from the Trans-Canada service west of Sudbury in northern Ontario, which we will exit.

He points out that people in many rural communities use Greyhound to get around. The closures will go into effect on October 31. In British Columbia, all routes will discontinue except for Vancouver to Seattle, which is operated by Greyhound Lines, Inc.

"The recent announcement although not surprising will have a huge impact on those that need the service the most", he said.