Regional Government of Madrid employs 44 new train drivers to join Metro workforce
44 new train drivers will begin rendering their services for Metro de Madrid as from tomorrow. Another 45 will begin work on 21 August and a further 11 on 5 October. Accordingly, 100 train drivers will be hired in total – 14 women and 86 men – and hence the company, which is celebrating its centenary, will strengthen the workforce and improve the service it offers its users due to the forecast increase in the number of passengers.
This new recruitment drive, announced at the end of last year by the Regional Government of Madrid, comes on top of the 360 train drivers that began rendering their services for Metro in 2016; in addition, 350 customer care sector heads joined the company to provide services in stations and another 200 maintenance workers, among others.
The hiring of these train drivers began with the pre-selection of candidates by the Public Employment Service of the Regional Government of Madrid and continued with an aptitude test comprising two parts: skills and personality tests. Candidates were then given a medical examination and began the specific training for the tasks to be performed.
This course is comprised of a two parts - theoretical and practical. The theoretical part concerns specific knowledge relating to the post of train driver, as well as other subject matters, such as the legislation affecting train movements, knowledge on rolling stock, incident resolution, labour risks, customer care and driving on test tracks. The training process ends with practice on actual train lines.
PLAN TO IMPROVE THE NETWORK
In addition to the hiring of 100 new train drivers, the Regional Government of Madrid is already working on processing the purchase of 60 new trains. Of these, 32 will replace models that need updating while 28 new trains will meet the needs of increased demand.
Furthermore, Metro de Madrid is immersed in the development of the Accessibility and Inclusion Plan 2016-2020, with a budget allocation of 145.7 million euros, under which the number of lifts in stations available to the 2.3 million underground users has been increased to 529.
This Plan, agreed with the Spanish Committee of Representatives of Persons with Disabilities (Spanish acronym: CERMI), will be implemented until the year 2020 and will mean than Metro de Madrid increases the number of accessible stations from 63% of the network to 73%, thanks to the installation of 89 lifts at 33 stations. This project is co-financed by the Regional Government of Madrid and the European Union through the European Regional Development Fund 2014‐2020. The actions carried out will allow the mobility of the 322,000 persons with disabilities that live in the Region of Madrid to be improved.
At present, works are under way to install 29 lifts at Gran Vía, Bilbao, Plaza Elíptica, Príncipe de Vergara and Tribunal stations. This is in addition to the 11 that began service in May at another four stations: three lifts at Barrio de la Concepción (line 7), two at Portazgo (line 1), three at Pavones (line 9) and three more at Sevilla (line 2). In addition, 13 lifts will be replaced at seven stations by more modern and efficient models.
In addition, the Regional Government of Madrid will continue developing the Modernisation Plan for Metro stations to renew 33 of the oldest stations in the network, with an investment of 89 million euros. Within the framework of this Plan, work is being done on Plaza Elíptica, Príncipe de Vergara, Bilbao, Tribunal and Gran Vía stations. In addition, public works have been awarded over recent weeks on Arturo Soria, Alfonso XIII, Esperanza and Prosperidad stations.
The aim of the works is to replace the wall cladding, obsolete installations and technology on the platforms and passageways by other more modern materials and equipment that comply with current regulations, which will facilitate maintenance work and improve the functionality of the facilities. In many of the cases, a system to waterproof the vaults is being implemented in those parts lacking waterproofing, so as to eliminate leaks; new electricity conduits will be installed, and new furniture will be fitted.