OC Transpo to test out driver shields on city buses

OC Transpo to test out driver shields on city buses

Union head calls plan ‘a good step forward’ as assaults continue to rise

OC Transpo will be installing protective barriers between passengers and drivers on a handful of city buses as part of a pilot project later this year.

The shields will be designed to “restrict customer access to the operator’s area,” according to a memo from general manager John Manconi that will be presented at Wednesday’s transit commission meeting.

Read Manconi’s memo to transit commision here
“Just over 10 years ago, OC Transpo conducted a preliminary review through installing a barrier on a bus, and has since continued monitoring developments in the transit industry relating to barriers,” Manconi said in the memo.

“This is now an opportune time to undertake a detailed review of the operational impacts and an assessment of the potential benefits of these devices.”

‘A good step forward’
Protective shields have been long-sought by OC Transpo operators, many of whom are forced to deal with riders who are distracting, unruly and outright violent, said Clint Crabtree, president of Amalgamated Transit Union Local 279.

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