“We’re just a bunch of grumpy people,” says Yosh Akutagawa with a sideways smile when talking about Rio Metro’s Facilities Maintenance Crew.
Anyone who knows Yosh knows he’s got a wry sense of humor. It’s one of the qualities that makes him a well-liked colleague.
Yosh is the Facilities and Maintenance Crew Supervisor for the Rio Metro Regional Transit District. In all seriousness, Yosh and his team of five work tirelessly to keep all the New Mexico Rail Runner Express stations and parking lots, as well as all Rio Metro bus stops, clean and safe–their primary focus for passengers.
Meet the G2 Team
Rick Frye, Martin Chavez, Robert Sanchez, Eric Murphy, Richard Sanchez, and Yosh comprise the crew that makes this happen. The G2 Team (short for Go To Team), as they call themselves, tackle a variety of duties each day. “I’ve got a great crew,” says Yosh. “They’re always willing to help out.”
Some of the G2 Team’s ongoing responsibilities include fixing lighting, removing garbage, cleaning graffiti, weeding, snow removal, signage instillation, and parking lot maintenance. “We also do monthly inspections on equipment like cameras, lights, and outlets, and fix whatever needs to be fixed,” says Yosh.
Other Duties As Assigned
As with any job, though, there are always other duties as assigned. “Sometimes we have washouts during monsoon seasons. When that happens, we have to clean mud off sidewalks and handicapped parking spaces.” says Yosh.
Another example of other duties as assigned is helping with bus bridges. “When there are incidents with the train, we provide transportation for passengers from one station to another. We have three Rio Metro buses and a van that we use. Last month there was an incident, and we took people from Isleta to Downtown Albuquerque.”
In addition to on-the-job duties, the G2 Team participates in a variety of trainings. “We do safety training, CPR classes, right-of-way training, and others,” says Yosh. “We work around the public, and there’s always safety issues we’re dealing with.”
“It’s not a glamour job, but we enjoy it,” he says. “We enjoy being around the people, the sense of accomplishment.”
Yosh couldn’t speak highly enough of his crew and wanted to make sure to give everyone on the G2 Team credit for their hard work. “The guys are good. They’re great. I feel fortunate for that. Everybody helps each other. We have a good working team,” he says.
The next time you’re at a Rail Runner station or a Rio Metro bus stop and you see Yosh, Rick, Martin, Robert, Eric, or Richard, make sure to give them a wave and a smile, as they’re always working hard to keep Rio Metro passengers safe.