By Mike DeNardo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — With much of its regional rail fleet still sidelined, SEPTA is planning express bus service, to ease the back-to-work-and-school crunch after Labor Day.

Starting September 6, SEPTA is adding rush-hour express buses from selected regional rail stations, to supplement reduced service because of structural cracks found this summer in a third its rail cars.

Michael Liberi, SEPTA’s Chief Officer of Surface Transportation, says, “Realizing that there’ll be an increase in ridership with school starting after Labor Day, we’ve selected certain lines on the regional rail system that will operate express bus service to our Fern Rock Transportation Center, AT&T Station and Suburban Station.”

City transit fares will apply to the express buses.

SEPTA is leasing 16 more rail cars in an effort to add service.

With no date as to when a regular schedule will resume, Liberi says the bus service will run at least through September.