Along the Bx9, a third driver assault in as many months

By · Published in 2011

As we’ve learned over the last few years, bus drivers are among the most vulnerable of MTA employees. There is no physical barrier between them and passengers, and irate riders often take out their frustrations on drivers. Over the years, the MTA has promised more cameras to enable them to catch perps who assault drivers, and they are slowly working on a bus partition pilot that will better protect drivers. The hits just keep on coming though.

CBS News’ Lou Young spoke with Maria Hogan, a driver in the Bronx who was assaulted this weekend. She had to deal with an irate passenger when she passed a stop closed for construction. The passengers yelled and then, on the way out, he punched her. As Young recounts, this happened in the middle of the day on Saturday afternoon “all of 300 yards from the passed stop.” It was the third such assault on this same bus line in three months.

Both the MTA and driver’s union reps said the right things. The MTA is committed to improving safety, and the union wants to work closely and quickly with the authority in doing so. Officials attribute a recent uptick in driver assaults to frustration over the economy, but whatever the cause, driver security has to be a priority. Protective measures should be implemented as soon as possible, and if the authority can’t speed up the pilot program, increasing police patrols on high-violence bus routes could be an answer.

Categories : Asides, Buses

One Response to “Along the Bx9, a third driver assault in as many months”

  1. ferryboi says:

    What is it lately about certain riders/neighborhoods that think it’s their right to ride for free and/or give the driver a smackdown? Where the hell is all this anger coming from? Such an enormous lack of civility and decency has to be stopped.

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