400% rise in number of people seeking jobs as bus drivers, statistics show

Increased interest in learning to drive buses will improve public transportation across Israel, Egged says.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Driving a bus (illustrative)
Driving a bus (illustrative)

The number of people seeking jobs as bus drivers has jumped by 400%, Maariv reported.

Israel closed its passenger trains in March to help stem the spread of coronavirus. At the same time, the number of bus lines was cut and the number of passengers allowed on each bus was limited.

While Israel has reopened most places of employment and increased the number of buses, train service has not resumed, leading Israelis to rely more on buses and raising demand for additional buses in each line.

Statistics from Egged's transportation college showed that just 535 people expressed interest in learning to be bus drivers in February, prior to the coronavirus outbreak, while 1,300 contacted the college between May 10-26, for a rise of 400%.

Egged told Maariv that there is a severe shortage of bus drivers, which harms the company's ability to provide efficient service. The company also said that it expects the rise in interest in the career to lead to an improvement in Israel's public transportation.

"We are prepared to absorb a large number of new drivers, and we are also prepared to increase the number of courses and trainings in the near future," Egged's Amir Halabi, who heads the colleges, said.