Peter Lansing, the Kelowna bus driver who was assaulted by a passenger and crashed a bus carrying approximately 20 passengers March 22, stood in front of a crowd at the Day of Mourning ceremony to share his story.
With tears in his eyes, Lansing took the microphone and revealed that this is not the first time he has been assaulted while on the job.
“The last thing I remember is a police officer’s flashing lights in my eyes and I looked out the doors… and I saw my two supervisors looking up at me and I saw their faces white as ghosts with shock looking at me,” said Lansing.
Lansing said that he was repeatedly kicked in the head with steel-toed boots and although he was seriously hurt he is glad that no one else was injured after the bus crashed over a concrete abutment crossed traffic and crashed into a cement wall.
“I didn’t even see the man raise his hands to hit me, then I woke up and slipped through a nightmare of sorts.”
Lansing has suffered a concussion that he is still healing from, and he said most of his other injuries have healed. He said that he used to know how to get around Kelowna with ease, however now he gets lost on his way to his doctors’ appointments.
Barriers to protect bus drivers have been promised by BC Transit to be implemented within the next three years across the province. The Plexiglas barriers were announced to be rolled out following the assault of a bus driver in North Saanich on Jan. 28.
“It’s not happening fast enough, yesterday is not soon enough, tomorrow is a little late,” said Lansing.
Lansing said that the investigation is ongoing.
The Day of Mourning, co-hosted by the North Okanagan Labour Council and WorkSafeBC too place at Ben Lee Park in Kelowna April 28 at 12 p.m.
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