NFTA Transporter

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

The NFTA hosts its 35th Annual Welless Fair

The NFTA's John DePaolo speaking to
representative at Sam's Club

The NFTA held its 35th annual Wellness Fair in the downtown bus terminal  This year, for the first time, the Wellness Fair was split across three days and hosted over 40 vendors and an estimated 120 employees. 

The Fair offered various hands-on treatments including massages, immunizations and health screenings. In addition, attendees had the opportunity to set up dental appointments and wellness visits with various organizations on-site.   
Pennette Green

On day two there was a table that featured Buffalo Sabres Hockey alumni Larry Playfair and Derek Smith who took photos and signed autographs.   In addition, the NFTA's own Kara Jeziorski from the HSEQ division promoted overall safety for employees and distributed some trinkets. Pennette Green added her own healthy touch by providing items to "make your own trail mix,"  complemented with other light refreshments.

A special shout out also goes to Chris Brophy and the entire NFTA facilities team for their assistance with set up and clean up.  The event would not been such a great success without their attention and hard work.  

We want to thank everyone who attended and took advantage of the wellness fair's offerings; it was great to see so many employees involved in the three-day event.  Stay tuned for information on similar upcoming events soon.
 
 

Monday, April 16, 2018

Safety Belt Use highlighted in NFTA Pit Crew Safety Campaign

Bus Operator Jessica Maldonado, from Metro's Babcock Station, is the newest face in the NFTA's HSEQ Safety Pit Crew campaign which highlights various safety topics. 

Buckle Up - Drive - Stay Alive
The first segment of the campaign focused on hand safety, and the importance while working that we guard the extremely valuable assets including our arms, hands and of course all ten fingers (ft. Lemar Robinson from Cold Spring).   Our second segment focused on winter surface preparation and keeping the snow and ice at bay (ft. Hector Lozada in Facilities Maintenance).  In addition, the adjunct internal "walk like a penquin" campaign helped remind employees on the best method for walking steadily and safely on ice. 


The most recent phase of the campaign focuses on proper seat belt use.  In an event of an accident seat belts really do save lives, so it's critical to buckle up.   In addition to being a great practice, New York State mandates that seat belts be properly worn by all vehicle operators and front seat passengers, and even though it's something simple it significantly helps  protect the lives of our employees, customers and the public on a daily basis.  
Jessica has dedicated the past seven years to her instructing and driving career at the NFTA.   She is well known for her great safety record, her positive attitude, and lovely smile.   Congratulations Jessica for a job well done!

 

 

 

Monday, April 9, 2018

NFTA hosts its 33rd Safety and Service Award Luncheon

Safety Award Winners at Salvatore's Restaurant
The NFTA hosted its 33rd Annual Safety and Service Awards luncheon on Sunday, April 8, at Salvatore's Italian Gardens.  The annual event recognizes the exemplary safety performance of Metro bus and rail drivers and vehicle maintenance workers as well as employees who have reached 25 years of employment at the NFTA.

This year's program began with introductory remarks by Helen Tederous, the NFTA's Public Affairs Director and was followed with an inspiring Invocation by Reverand Ray Mitchell, who is a MetroLink Operator out of Babcock station.  After lunch, the NFTA's Executive Director, Kim Minkel, accompanied by Commissioners Margo Downey and Phil Wilcox individually recognized each award-winning employee present at the event.

Service Award Employees  
Although not everyone was able to attend,
16 drivers received awards for 10 years of safe driving, one with 20 years, two who have 30 years and five with over 30 years - wow!  There are also seven maintenance employees that have a 10 year safety record and 21 employees celebrating a silver anniversary.

“I am so happy to be here today to honor our amazing employees who have achieved outstanding safety records and those celebrating 25 years of service.  These milestones could not have been reached without a true commitment to the company and to the welfare of our customers and the community we serve everyday.  Congratulations to each of you, and thank you for your continued dedication and service." said Kim Minkel.

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

WNY Delegation Announces $9 Million in NFTA Funding

Hon. Monica Wallace, Crystal Peoples-Stokes and Sean Ryan
pictured with NFTA's Tom George and members of Metro's engineering staff
On April 2, New York State Assembly members Crystal Peoples-Stokes, Sean Ryan and Monica Wallace along with members of NFTA's leadership team came together at the Delevan/Canisius Metro Rail Station in downtown Buffalo.  The delegation members were on site to announce a $9 Million capital grant through the New York State Department of Transportation for improvements to the NFTA's light rail system. 

The timely funding comes amid significant deterioration through the Metro Rail system, which accounts for 90 percent of the NFTA's capital dollars.  Issues stem from the fact that there is no dedicated state funding line for the light rail system, as current STOA and capital funding only account for bus service at all upstate transit authorities.

"We are extremely grateful to Governor Cuomo, the entire Western New York delegation and the New York State Department of Transportation for these funds.  The Metro Rail system is a tremendous asset in our community, and we need to continue to invest in it to make sure that we maintain a sustainable public transportation network.  This funding will allow us to move onto making improvements at LaSalle Station, to rebuilding rail cars, and taking care of our track and catenary.  Although riders may not physically see these components, they are critical to the system's operation and to providing our riders with safe and consistent rail service," said Tom George, NFTA's Public Transit Director.

Last year Metro rail served an estimated 5 million riders, and these funds will help to continue to serve its customers in the best way possible and further support the resurgence of the great Queen City.

 
 
 
 

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Friday, March 16 - Remember to Thank your Metro Transit Drivers

Metro Driver Mike Mercado
Friday, March 16 is National Driver Appreciation Day, and we need your help in thanking those individuals that get you where you need to go every day - and safely!  

Our Metro drivers served 27 million riders last year which includes over 4,500 bus stops and thousands of trips along the rail line.  That's a lot of service!  

Even though our drivers make the job look easy, maneuvering large vehicles through traffic and inclement weather is tough.  In addition, they maintain tight schedules so that riders get where they need to go on time and safely.  With all that on their "to do" list they deserve some praise, and the best day to do it is one designated for just that!

If you want to recognize your Metro driver(s) you can do it a few ways; something like a nice smile and a wave as you’re boarding your bus or rail car or when you're leaving can go a long way!  You can also post your kind words on social media using #tdad and by tagging @TheNFTA - Facebook, @nftametro - Twitter, @nfta_wny - Instagram, or by calling our Customer Care Center with a commendation at (716) 855-7211.

We hope that you will help us in celebrating the hardworking and dedicated transit drivers that serve our community daily and say thanks especially on March 16. 



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Monday, March 12, 2018

800 Steps - A Great Start to a Saturday Morning!

Team Captain Mike Moore in center with NFTA Climbers
including ARFF members on right.
Saturday, March 10, the American Lung Association held its annual Buffalo Air Climb at One Seneca Tower in downtown Buffalo. The event hosted over 500 attendees, many of which were there to climb 36 flights (800 steps) all in support of lung health awareness and cancer research.

There were over 25 teams on site and the NFTA showed up in spades!  They raised over $6,000 and were in the top three group fundraisers.





Now, if that isn't cool enough, four of our 14 climbers also took home awards as follows: Andrew Laforce - 2nd place overall male firefighter (who climbed in full gear), Sean Purtill-3rd Place, male ages 19-29, Patrick Concannon-3rd Place, Male ages 50-59 and Jack Murphy-2nd place, Males ages 60-69. 

Some other highlights - Jessica Dudziak, a former two-time Air Climb award winner, took part as a civilian leaving her 65 pounds of firefighting gear out of the mix but while still carrying a very important bundle, her unborn child.  Brian McDonald, who has been with the NFTA for less than six months was very excited about his participation and rocked it both in fundraising and physically (placing #22 overall).  "It was so great to be a part of this wonderful event and to climb alongside my NFTA colleagues and some of their family members.  I am happy that I was able to support our team, and I look forward to doing it again next year," said Brian. 

Nice job NFTA climbers - what a great achievement! 


 



Thursday, March 8, 2018

Rachel Maloney Is Making Strides in Transit

Congratulations to Rachel Maloney as she has been selected to take the lead on the Amherst Rail Extension environmental study and preliminary engineering efforts as the Project Manager.  Rachel has been a point person for Metro on this project since its inception and has effectively managed numerous consultants while engaging with the public and collaborating with internal and external stakeholders.

Through her six years in the Service Planning Department, Rachel has been a key member on large planning initiatives including the Amherst Rail Extension, DL&W Station and Niagara Street as well as proactively working with the Citizens Advisory Committee and Go Buffalo Moms.  Prior to joining Metro, Rachel spent three years at the Erie Metropolitan Transit Authority as the Manager of the Paratransit LIFT Division and then as the Manager of Grants and Planning.

Rachel is also known for her team-player attitude and willingness to support group initiatives outside of her project manager role.  Each year she helps coordinate the NFTA corporate team for the American Lung Association's Buffalo Air Climb and ascends 36 flights of stairs (800 steps) on behalf of her mother who passed away from COPD.  She is also a graduate of APTA's Emerging Leaders Program and continues to remain active within the network.