Staffing shortage may lead to longer wait times at the Jersey Shore

A staffing shortage is impacting an iconic Jersey Shore attraction. It seems that there is a shortage of tram car operators at the Wildwood Boardwalk.

News 12 Staff

May 4, 2021, 12:58 AM

Updated 1,113 days ago

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A staffing shortage is impacting an iconic Jersey Shore attraction. It seems that there is a shortage of tram car operators at the Wildwood Boardwalk.
“We typically have a staff of about 100. So right now we’re still looking to hire between 40 and 50 people,” says Boardwalk Special Improvement District Executive Director Patrick Rosenello.
Tram car operators are usually foreign exchange students. But visa delays have prevented many from coming to the United States. Other former employees are still collecting unemployment and have chosen not to come back to work.
The staffing shortage is also impacting other aspects of the Jersey Shore. Help wanted signs flood the boardwalk.
“People are not finding their way back to us looking for employment. We’ve put out ads and we also do work with the Chamber of Commerce and job fairs and things like that. People just are not coming in looking for employment,” says Ole Time Photos owner Joseph Toland.
The business owners say that if they can’t hire the staff they need in time for the summer season, they will be forced to limit hours. This could mean longer wait times during a summer that is expected to be busier than ever.
“What we ended up doing last year was we had to cut out Monday through Thursday. We didn’t provide any daytime tram service and we actually had fewer trams running at night,” says Rosenello. “What ends up happening a lot of people who want to get the tram just simply can’t because we don’t have enough capacity for them.”
With the tram and many businesses gearing up to open on Friday for Mother’s Day weekend, officials are hoping that visitors will be patient.
“I hope people understand that it’s an employment issue. It’s hard to get people to these jobs. Even as we increase what we pay people, they’re still not asking for it,” Toland says.
This summer will mark the 72nd year of the tram cars being in Wildwood.


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