Kelowna bus driver assaulted and tested for Covid 19

BC transit

According to Scott Lovell, the Chairman of the Transit Union's Covid-19 Committee in Kelowna, a bus driver is being tested for Covid-19 after being assaulted at the Queensway Exchange Saturday afternoon.

“A potential passenger, rolled up in his sleeping bag, was coughing away, so the driver was asking how he was doing or if he's ok, to see if maybe he shouldn't be riding the bus. The passenger swore at the driver, so the driver turned around because we're taught to disengage and the person punched the driver right from behind, I believe in the head, and then jumped him,” said Lovell, adding the individual then spat in the driver’s face.

Thankfully, two bystanders were able to get the individual off of the man and hold him down until police arrived.

 “You understand the membranes in your eyes are like having an open wound, so the driver had to go to the hospital for a plethora of tests and now unfortunately he can't see his own family and he has to be isolated for at least 14 days.” said Lovell.

He said it is disheartening when bus drivers are assaulted and verbally abused for their efforts.

 “We're in a situation in our community, in the whole world right now, on heightened alerts and everyone is doing their part or trying to do their part. Considered essential service workers as we are, we're trying to not only do our jobs under very difficult circumstances but we're also trying to help protect our passengers as well."

Lovell says since busses became a free ride, more street people are taking advantage for a variety of reasons, including warmth.

We're still waiting on confirmation from Kelonwa RCMP.