“He’s beaten up pretty good,” Scott Lovell, president of Amalgamated Transit Union, Local 1722, told Global News. “But he’s in good spirits.”
Lovell said he was unable to provide details of what happened that caused the crash, but said, “if barriers were there, there’s no way the bus is going anywhere.”
The number 8 bus servicing UBC Okanagan crashed over a concrete abutment in front of a home near McCurdy Road, in the opposite lane of travel just before 8 p.m.
Unconfirmed reports indicated the bus driver was assaulted while the full-size BC Transit vehicle was in motion on Rutland Road.
The bus was backed off the cement blocks to help the passengers exit the bus, according to a witness.
The driver, who is in Kelowna General Hospital being treated for his injuries, has been operating buses in Kelowna for four years and previously had been a driver on the coast, according to Lovell.
Lovell said while BC Transit has begun to plan for barriers to better protect drivers, there is no schedule to implement the plan.
A transit bus crash along Rutland Road North and McCurdy Road just after 8 p.m. was allegedly due to an assault.
A witness on scene said a passenger was verbally and physically assaulting the driver of the bus for several minutes while the vehicle was in motion.
The bus swerved off the road knocking down a chunk of the sidewalk along Rutland Road.
The driver was reportedly taken to hospital. It's unclear if there are any other injuries at this time.