Photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS A Bombardier executive says he is truly apologetic for the latest problems with the streetcars his company recently delivered to the Toronto Transit Commission.Appearing before a TTC meeting at City Hall on Tuesday, Benoit Broissoit, president of Bombardier Transportation for the Americas says Bombardier understands and shares the disappointment.

Bombardier exec apologizes to TTC over delivery of 89 faulty streetcars

TORONTO — The president of Bombardier Transportation made his first appearance at Toronto’s transit commission board meeting on Tuesday and apologized for the latest problems with the streetcars his company delivered to the city.

“We understand and share the disappointment of the mayor, the board and the TTC riders. We truly apologize,” said Benoit Brossoit.

The transit authority said last week that the first 67 of 89 streetcars would be sent back for preventative repairs due to a welding issue.

Although the majority of streetcars will be sent back to Bombardier’s Welding Centre of Excellence in La Pocatiere, Que., Brossoit said the issue poses no safety risk to riders and staff members taking the TTC streetcars.

“Bombardier is Canadian and we are committed to Ontario,” said Brossoit, adding that all measures had been taken to fix this production issue.

To minimize the effect on service, only three or four cars will be repaired at a time. The shipping and repairs of the cars should take 19 weeks to be completed.

All 67 streetcars are scheduled to be fixed by 2022.

The problem was identified by Bombardier 18 months ago and involves work completed in Mexico.

Bombardier’s chief operating officer David Van der Wee told the board that the level of complexity of building the TTC streetcars was higher than expected. He assured the board that the root causes of the issue have been corrected and that the entire cost of the repairs will be covered by Bombardier.

“When narrowing down the issue to 67 cars, I want to highlight that we work with very conservative assumptions, always to be on the safe side of things,” he said.

Programs like this are complex and full of challenges, said Brossoit.

“Our commitment is to deliver on our promises, but, also to make it right when situation like this occur,” he said.

“Bombardier stands by its product. Always, no compromise,” he added.

The delays and recent production issues in the $1-billion order has caused frustration on the part of the board members, the TTC riders and the mayor.

TTC Chair Josh Colle said the streetcars were needed as soon as possible to serve passengers and replace the older ones.

“I strongly recommend you take a ride on some of those crowded, leaky, beasts of streetcars that are serving our passengers right now,” he told them.

TTC board member Rick Byers asked the president of Bombardier whether he should be trusted when telling the board that no more delays are expected.

Byers said it had been an “unbelievably frustrating experience for the people in this commission, but more importantly for the riders.”

“For us to have had to defend you, as I have had to do, it has been difficult,” he said.

Brossoit reassured the board that despite the repeated delays and recent production problems, the streetcars were his main focus and have been so since he started on the job.

He said the cars would be delivered on time.

“We are fully committed to the overall delivery of the 204 cars by the end of 2019. This means 77 more cars next year,” said Brossoit.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Recollections of well-known families in Red Deer

Past and present families recognized on Family Day

Assault suspect nabbed with sawed-off shotgun

Rocky Mountain House RCMP conduct investigation

New highway to B.C. proposed

The Howse Pass shortcut to British Columbia is worth taking another look… Continue reading

Red Deer RCMP execute search warrant

Heavy police presence on Nash Street

Your community calendar

Feb. 19 A Liberation of Holland event is being held at the… Continue reading

Reader’s opinion: Here’s how Premier Kenney can build a stronger Alberta

Apparently, the UPC government has decided that most seniors should pay more… Continue reading

Tournament of Hearts veteran skip Kerry Galusha curls through pain

MOOSE JAW, Sask. — If Kerry Galusha is skipping Northwest Territories at… Continue reading

Andrew Mangiapane scores first hat trick, leads Flames over Ducks 6-4

Flames 6 Ducks 4 CALGARY — Andrew Mangiapane was front and centre… Continue reading

Mielke: Small town Alberta great place to live

There is something to be said for living in small town, Alberta.… Continue reading

Trudeau tightlipped on plan to end protests ‘quickly and peacefully’

OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was tightlipped Monday about his plan… Continue reading

Red Deer Rebels end B.C. road trip with win over Prince George

Rebels 4 Cougars 2 The Red Deer Rebels finished the B.C. road… Continue reading

Bombardier to sell train unit to France’s Alstom, shedding biggest division

MONTREAL — Bombardier Inc. has reached a US$8.2-billion deal to sell its… Continue reading

Most Read