Bus Drivers Protest Violent Incidents

YERUSHALAYIM -
israeli bus drivers protest
Bus drivers block the Azrieli junction in Tel Aviv during a protest, Sunday. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

 

Bus drivers in Tel Aviv protested against violence on their routes, after a recent series of incidents involving attacks on drivers, The Jerusalem Post reported on Sunday.

Three minors were arrested after they threw glass bottles at buses and sprayed drivers with pepper spray, in Givat Ze’ev, near Yerushalayim, last week.

In August, a bus driver in Ashdod was lightly injured in an assault by three young men after he told them to put their masks on. They fled to avoid arrest.

Two days earlier, another driver had his nose broken by a passenger who refused to wear a mask, and a day before that, a passenger on a bus in Tel Aviv threatened the driver and then smashed windows with a hammer after being told to wear a mask.

 

“If [Transporation Minister Merav Michaeli] continues to ignore the basic requirements of bus drivers, we will not hesitate to go to the High Court,” said Israel Ganon, head of the Bus Drivers’ Union at the Histadrut.

“We can shut down the entire country,” he added.

According to union data, 3,644 drivers were attacked in 2020, though the actual number is thought to be higher because only about 47% of attacks are reported. Some 19% of bus drivers reported three or more attacks during the year.