Reduction in Surfside bus driver and passenger attacks

DESPITE a couple of high profile attacks in recent months, new figures show assaults on Gold Coast bus drivers and passengers have actually fallen.

Translink released data yesterday, showing attacks on Surfside buses had decreased in the order of 80 per cent in the past five years.

According to the Brisbane Times, Transport Minister Scott Emerson showed off the latest statistics in response to a question on notice from Gaven MP Alex Douglas.


They show the number of assaults of Surfside bus drivers fell from 158 to 31 between 2009 and 2014, while the number of reported assaults on passengers fell from 50 to 16 in the same period.

The data includes incidents in which bus drivers were spat on, verbally assaulted, threatened with violence, or had an object thrown at them.

Mr Emerson said the government was working with industry groups to address safety issues on public transport, particularly in the wake of several high-profile incidents on Gold Coast buses.

Most recently, a bus driver was punched in the head by a passenger who refused to pay for a ticket after boarding the Surfside bus in Surfers Paradise on March 29.

A week earlier, a university student was charged with serious assault after allegedly dragging a driver from his bus at Southport and bashing him on the footpath over a fare dispute.

In February, two young women were charged with attacking an elderly, vision-impaired man on a Surfside Bus at Kirra.