Bus Driver are assaulted, robbed and abused transporting our communities most precious cargo – today they are declaring that enough is enough.
Launching the Get on Board campaign today Bus drivers from across the South East corner are coming together to demand action to reduce violence on the Public Transport network.
Transport Workers’ Union State Secretary Peter Biagini said these attacks will continue until the TransLink steps up and stops risking the lives of drivers.
“Every time a driver is physically or verbally assaulted, harassed or robbed, it is a serious issue.”
Survey’s of Bus Drivers have revealed alarming statistics showing that 96% of bus drivers have been abused, one in five drivers have been physically attacked at the wheel and 36% have had passengers assaulted on their bus. Serious road safety issues such as failing brakes have also been exposed.
“There were over 40 reported attacks on bus drivers in Queensland in every year from 2011 yet TransLink doesn’t see this as a problem.” Mr Biagini said.
“We need harsher penalties for all offenders who attack bus drivers and the travelling public.”
“In the last 2 weeks alone we have seen overwhelming support thrown behind this campaign from the general community with XXX signatures on petitions.”
“Communities need to be able to trust their Public Transport networks are safe for themselves, their kids, their elderly Mums & Dads.
“TransLink have fundamentally failed in their duty to provide a safe work place for the drivers let alone safe travelling experience for passengers.”
“We want all driver’s to be able to do their job safely, and go home at the end of the day.”
“But drivers are leaving the industry because they are affarid they will be the next victim.”
“Why are the government waiting for someone to die before they act?”
► The campaign will be launch at the Bus stops in front of Pacific Fair on the Gold Coast
► Interviews available with State Secretary Peter Biagini
► Launch will start from 10:30am
Tom Millroy – 0411 875 910
The statewide survey of Queensland bus drivers revealed that:
- 96.5% of drivers have been abused
- 62.4% report that they get abused regularly
- 89.4% report being intimidated or threatened
- 81.2% have been threatened with physical harm, 54.1% reporting this happens regularly
- 71.8% have had objects thrown at their bus such as rocks, bottles, metal poles
- 74.1% experienced verbal abuse
- 68.2% were the target of road rage
- 17.6% experienced racial abuse
- 27% have been spat on
- 21.2% or one fifth have been physically attacked at the wheel (assaulted)
- 36.5% reported passengers assaulting other passengers on their bus
- 85.9% reported vandalism
- 95.3% reported carrying intoxicated passengers
- 58.8% say that the procedures in place are not adequate to ensuring safety in dealing with repeat offenders
Serious road safety issues impacting on the safety of passengers, drivers and road users were also exposed:
- 98.8% of bus drivers experienced mechanical issues with their bus
- Mechanical issues reported were of a serious nature impacting safety, with 43.5% of drivers reporting faulty brakes and 41.2% reporting faulty tyres
- Drivers reported that buses were put back on the road without the safety issues being fixed, with a significant 83.5% stating that they had reported a maintenance issue that had not been resolved next time they drove the bus
- 89.4% said that the Translink running schedule pressures drivers to drive unsafely
- 95.3% had been abused because their bus was late due to unrealistic timetables
- 84.7% said lack of buses and/or drivers serving a route pressures drivers to drive unsafely
- 98.8% believe the competitive tendering process soon to be introduced by the government will increase the pressure on drivers.
MEDIA OPPORTUNITY: RALLY TODAY
11AM, FRIDAY 19 AUGUST
Outside PACIFIC FAIR SHOPPING CENTRE, GOLD COST