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Regional Transit Creates Bus Mechanics Apprenticeship Program

  

Sacramento Regional Transit has identified a way to find entry-level mechanics to replace the dozen or so mechanics who retire or leave the agency every year.

Sac RT is the first agency in Northern California to be certified by the State Department of Industrial Relations to train apprentices in bus repair as part of an apprenticeship program in conjunction with community colleges.

Henry Li is the head of Sac RT. He says students will be apprentices with the agency as part of a three-year program.

"The entry-level mechanic maintains every aspect of RT's bus fleet, from preventative maintenance to rebuilding engines. These mechanics are critical to the safety and reliability of RT's bus fleet."

Li says the buses that run on compressed natural gas require mechanics with special training, which has been difficult to find.

Sac RT is training two students from a Los Angeles trade school and expects to begin offering training to Sacramento-area community colleges soon.