MONTREAL — If you’ve ridden the new AZUR Metro train, consider yourself one of the lucky ones.
Currently, only one of the new state-of-the-art trains is operating within the STM’s entire Metro network.
It was launched on Feb. 8 on the orange line.
At the time, the STM announced a second AZUR train would be added after the first one went 61 consecutive days without any mechanical incident.
As of Tuesday, 100 days had passed but there was still no word on when a second train would be introduced.
It is not clear whether the first AZUR train has experienced any mechanical issues in that time.
In an email to Global News, an STM spokesperson wrote that tests on the second train are going well and it will be put on the tracks soon, but no date has been confirmed.
The longer it takes for the STM to introduce the new trains, the more expensive it becomes because of maintenance and repairs needed for the aging MR-63 trains that are now 50-years-old.
The lengthy gap between the introduction of the first AZUR train and the second one is causing concern for a government watchdog.
“The government and organization is not capable to manage Quebec taxpayers’ dollars and that is incredibly worrying,” Carl Vallée, the Quebec director of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, told Global News.
He insisted the buck needs to stop with the transport minister.
“I think that the minister has a responsibility to protect taxpayer dollars and so, he should absolutely intervene because he is absolutely accountable for this,” Vallée said.
The aging fleet on the orange line is expected to be entirely replaced by September 2018.
Originally, the new trains were supposed start rolling out in 2014.
The transport minister blamed computer glitches for the delays.
“There was a software that prevents you from having an accident with another train. That was not working,” Jacques Daoust told Global News in Quebec City.
For now, it is sill not known how long commuters will have to wait until the second AZUR train comes into service.