Keolis, the operator of the MBTA Commuter Rail Line that has struggled to operate this winter, took out a full-page ad in The Boston Globe on Thursday to apologize to riders.
“For every time you missed tucking your kids in at night, for every time you were late to work, for every frustrating moment, we offer you our sincere and heartfelt apology,’’ reads the note. “We know we haven’t met your expectations and must do better.’’
The letter is signed by new General Manager Gerald Francis, who took over leadership toward the end of February when Thomas Mulligan stepped down. Just 35 percent of Keolis-run trains ran on time in February. Massachusetts fined Keolis $434,425, the maximum amount allowable under its contract, for the perpetual lateness.
“When you’re frustrated, we are too. When you’re angry, we feel it. And when you demand answers, we demand them of ourselves,’’ he writes.
The note acknowledges that Keolis is partly to blame for the problems, and also points to the record snowfalls this winter and aging equipment for the issues.
“The weather took a tremendous toll on the MBTA train equipment, which now must be repaired and tested for safety before being returned to service. That takes time,’’ the letter reads. It also says the Commuter Rail will be up to 100 percent passenger capacity by March 30.
The letter also says Keolis will improve its communications, one of the key criticisms that Governor Charlie Baker has leveled at the company.
Here’s the full ad as it appears in print: