Vernon could soon lose it’s role as a pit stop for Greyhound running between Kamloops and Kelowna.
The bus company has applied to the Passenger Transportation Board to cut several routes in BC.
Among them is the daily service between Kamloops and Kelowna, which would be reduced to a minimum of twice weekly.
The bus stops in Vernon, which would mean a minimum of 42 weekly stop cut back two.
The larger picture for the South Okanagan would also see reductions in service between Kelowna and Penticton, Kelowna and the Alberta and elimination of stops in Keremeos amd Hedley in the Vancouver to Osoyoos run.
Greyhound says in its application it has been losing considerable amounts of money in an unsustainable manner on its intercity runs for 8 years.
It says bus passenger traffic has been challenged by many factors, including declining ridership in rural communities and shrinking populations in some rural areas.
Greyhound also cites competition from other subsidized transportation and subsidies, regulatory constraints and reduced oil prices leading to more people traveling in cars.
The company complains that in BC, the government has allowed unregulated and often government subsidized competitors to implement services on Greyhound authorized routes without the constraint of regulatory oversight or filing, and often without offering Greyhound the opportunity to object.
It says ridership in BC has dropped from just over one million one thousand in 2015 to 853 thousand 733 this year.
Greyhound says the company’s operating deficit in BC in the year ending March 2017 was 12 million 923 thousand 230 dollars.
It says in its application that if demand were to increase, Greyhound would increase its service offering to meet the demand.
Public comments on the application can be made to the Passenger Transportation Board in writing.
Passenger Transportation Board
PO Box 9850 STN PROV GOVT
Victoria BC V8W 9T5
Anyone who wants to comment has until October 13th.
The plan is to eliminate the routes in January, 2018.