Transport Department Launches Initiative To Improve Safety For Bus Drivers

A call to improve safety for bus drivers in Brisbane, especially for those who drive in problematic routes across Forest Lake and Inala, have finally been heard, following the announcement of Queensland’s new network officer strategy.

Read: Notorious Forest Lake Blvd and Rudyard St Intersection to Get Safety Upgrade

In January 2023, Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey announced that bus drivers will be protected with full safety barriers and that Queensland Police Service will focus on public transport services in the Brisbane metropolitan area.

This comes after some bus drivers started boycotting the routes due to attacks from gangs in the area, after being spat on and even having human faeces thrown on them.

Safety For Bus Drivers
RTBU members with Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey (Photo credit: RTBU QLD Branch)

Because of the incident, Rail Tram and Bus Union (RTBU) issued a safety notice to members advising them of their rights to be safe at work.

“It is widely known that the 100/110 bus routes servicing Inala and Forest Lake are the most dangerous routes in the Transport for Brisbane Network,” RTBU QLD Branch said.

The union added that on 8 January, an RTBU Member was assaulted twice by an organised gang. Authorities were required to stop the 100 service altogether due to the uncontrolled violence and chaos created by the gangs that were present that night.

The new network officer strategy that would improve safety for bus drivers is part of the Queensland Government’s $64.7 million commitment for public transport over the next five years.

Safety For Bus Drivers
Photo credit: Translink/Facebook

This would mark the first time that police will patrol Queensland’s bus network. They will also be deployed across Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, and Logan.

RTBU said this is a big step in the right direction and they are looking forward to working closely with Translink in the delivery of the new initiative.

Read: Would Public Transport Be Able To Keep Pace With Pallara’s Booming Population?

For the meantime, there’s a mobile unit in the area constantly monitoring the situation all day as well as a team sent over from Translink who are on duty from 6:00 p.m. every night.