New train driver gets green light

Staff & Operators

Lisa Faaifo with Ian Ladd, Managing Director of Transdev Wellington and Training Team Manager, Lara Franklin. 

Until recently, Lisa Faaifo had her hands full as a busy stay at home mother of five.

As she returned to the work force, Lisa started looking for an administration role when a train driver position in the wonderful world of rail came up and she decided to “give it a go”.

Lisa first had to pass six tests including aptitude testing before she could be offered a role as trainee driver at Transdev which delivers train services on behalf of Metlink.

She then went through nine months of paid training before getting the green light a fully-fledged train driver last month.

“I never thought of becoming a train driver before this but since I started working with Transdev I’ve absolutely loved it, it’s such a good job and every day is different,” Lisa says.

When speaking about the low numbers of female train drivers across the country Lisa says she encourages other women to think about it as a career option.

“I thought being a male dominated industry it would be difficult but all of the train drivers have been really helpful and supportive. I would tell anyone thinking of applying for the training programme to go for it.”

Greater Wellington Regional Council regional transport committee chair Barbara Donaldson commended Lisa’s efforts and says it was great to see another female driver join the team.

“I’m pleased to see another woman in this role given the fact that only about five per cent of Wellington’s train drivers are women – we need to encourage more women into this kind of role.”

Transdev Managing Director Ian Ladd said he was proud to welcome Lisa to the team.

“We congratulate Lisa on completing the long and intense training process. The training school has a high standard which will not be compromised when we are short of drivers.

Ian says the reason the training is intense is due to the responsibility the drivers hold once qualified.

“Train drivers can have up to 1000 passengers on an eight car Matangi, many of who are standing, so a smooth comfortable ride is important for the safety of the passengers on board.”