Every day before the Atlanta Streetcars roll out on the route, maintenance personnel inspect tracks and overhead wires to ensure there are no hazards along the right of way. This is part of our track maintenance plan standard operating procedures.
Our training with the Atlanta Police Department and Atlanta Fire and Rescue has included vehicle familiarization, facility familiarization and use of emergency re-railing equipment. We recently conducted a full-scale exercise with these organizations to give our personnel a chance to practice many of these skills, and they performed admirably.
This entire process — from construction, to receiving the vehicles, to hiring and training personnel, to conducting and documenting each test — takes time. And time is the other element we’ve invested with the Atlanta Streetcar. We have taken time to go through this process thoroughly and correctly. We also want and need to be good stewards of our citizens’ tax dollars, which is why we have taken steps to conduct several of the necessary tests simultaneously to open the Atlanta Streetcar as soon as we can do so safely.
Michael Geisler is chief operating officer of the Atlanta Streetcar.