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King County Metro launches first-ever recruitment for full-time transit operators


King County Metro is seeking full-time transit operators who are customer-focused and want to work for one of the leading large transit agencies in North America. A one-week recruiting effort May 16-24 marks the first time in decades that Metro has opened the door to any aspiring transit operator to apply for full-time work holding a current Class A or B Commercial Driver License without first starting with the agency as a part-time operator.


Transit Operator wages range from $24.08-$34.40 per hour. The job posting is open from May 16-24, and allows full-time bus drivers from other areas of the country or professional drivers with Commercial Driver Licenses to apply for full-time work. Job candidates will need to have a passenger endorsement on their CDL and the air brake restriction removed. Training will be customized for external trainees, allowing the necessary time to familiarize them with the large variety of equipment in use at Metro and the multitude of Metro’s service routes.


“We’re investing in and growing our workforce, which already is the best in the country. We encourage professional drivers to join our team and be a part of this leading transit agency, one that cares about our workers and our customers,” said Rob Gannon, Metro General Manager.


“We look forward to this opportunity for our current part-time operators to join with Metro and other professional drivers, as we build a stronger workforce of full-time operators. Driving for Metro is a great career and a great future,” said Ken Price, president of ATU Local 587.


Since the 1970s, labor agreements required new transit operators start as part-time drivers and then seek promotion to full-time work. An agreement reached in 2017 with Amalgamated Transit Union Local 587 allows a change in this approach and allows Metro also to meet target ratios of full-time and part-time operators.


Metro estimates that it needs to hire about 650 full-time operators over the next two years to continue to operate and increase service, as well as to address retirements. This recruitment is intended to identify 35 initial external candidates between now and later this fall; internal applicants also are accepted and details are in the online job posting. Metro expects that hiring full-time operators will help consistently provide daily bus service as we expand and put more service on the road now and in the future.


Currently Metro employs more than 3,000 operators, with about 1,000 part-time and 2,000 full-time drivers. A change in the recent contract called for a higher percentage of full-time drivers, something that allows the agency to continue to grow as an all-day service provider.


See if you have what it takes to drive for Metro by taking an online test.


King County Metro carried a record 122.5 million riders in 2018 and is among the top systems in the country in ridership growth – providing an estimated 400,000 daily rides. The agency was named the best large transportation agency in North America in 2018, receiving the Outstanding Public Transportation System Achievement Award from the American Public Transportation Association (APTA). Metro is focused on serving the region’s mobility needs by operating bus service, water taxi, light rail, streetcar, vanpools and community-focused solutions. Learn more at