Greyhound service cut pushed back

After first announcing it would discontinue service from Fort Frances to Thunder Bay as of May 4, and then later July 4, that date now has been pushed back to Aug. 20, a Greyhound spokesperson reported yesterday.
Mel Levandoski, Greyhound regional manager for Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Northern Ontario, said the most recent date is a firm one, and will not change now that the company has come into full compliance with the Public Vehicles Act.
But Levandoski added it’s possible a third-party operator could take over the route prior to that date.
“There’s been a few groups that have contacted Greyhound interested in looking at the trips,” he noted.
“We’ve provided them with some financial information, and they’re right now looking at the financial information to see if it’s a viable option for them; to see if they can possibly take over those trips.
“But we still haven’t heard anything firm from those people yet. They’re still looking at the numbers,” he stressed.
Levandoski also said he hasn’t heard back yet from the minister of transportation’s office, adding that closer to Aug. 20, there likely will be a ruling on whether or not Greyhound will be allowed to give up the route.
“If we find someone to take over the trips before then, then obviously that will take of it self. There will be a carrier,” he explained. “But if we cannot, we are still looking at a discontinuance for Aug. 20.”
Levandoski reiterated that from Greyhound’s point-of-view, the Thunder Bay-Fort Frances run no longer is economically feasible.
“It cannot run the way it is,” he argued. “On average, we’re carrying about six people per trip.”
While Levandoski couldn’t reveal the names of the operators that have contacted Greyhound, one local company—Asselin Transportation—is known to be among them.
“We’re thinking about it, let’s put it that way,” Asselin Transportation owner Eldon Mose said yesterday. “It’s hard to know what’s going to happen there.
“The numbers aren’t there, by the look of it so far,” he admitted, agreeing that ridership, on average, has been down to about six people per trip.
“Anything’s possible, but I don’t know what’s going to happen at this point. I really don’t,” Mose stressed.