Skip to main content
Publish date:

Metro Council to spend over $1M on protective barriers for bus drivers

There's been a rise in driver assaults in the Twin Cities this year.
Author:

More than $1 million will be spent by the Metropolitan Council to improve the safety of bus drivers on Twin Cities transit routes.

The funding was approved by the council on Wednesday, following a number of high-profile assaults on bus drivers by passengers in recent years.

The council will spend $1.23 million to install barriers in 600 Metro Transit buses to prevent drivers from being assaulted while they work.

It's expected to take around 18 months to fit the barriers in all the buses, which will happen at a rate of around eight a week.

Metro Transit says that there have been 189 assaults or threats against bus drivers through October this year, an increase on the 184 reported all of last year.

Sign up: Subscribe to our daily newsletters

Although it hasn't been decided yet which bus routes will receive the protective barriers first, the Star Tribune reports those that have experienced the most problems, such as routes 5, 19 and 21, will likely get priority.

The rise in assaults on bus drivers sparked calls from union leaders for barriers between operators and passengers.

They also think concerns over driver assaults could be putting off potential applicants at a time when the Twin Cities is seeing a serious shortage of transit operators.

Next Up

Screen Shot 2021-11-25 at 7.53.37 AM

Another 5,000 lbs. of goldfish removed from Carver County lakes

It all likely stemmed from people dumping their pets into local waters a few years ago.

Rosaleia Shelton

Appeal to find 19-year-old missing from Bloomington

The teen left her home on Monday afternoon.

hospital, emergency room

Deaths of twin fetuses after woman was shot ruled a double homicide

The woman was shot in the abdomen in mid-September.

Payton Willis / Gopher Basketball

Gophers improve to 5-0 with win over Jacksonville

The Gophers are establishing momentum early in the season.

Anthony Edwards

Ant's massive slam leads Timberwolves to fifth straight win

The dunk didn't count, but provided the highlight of the night.

Cam Talbot / Minnesota Wild

WIld arrive late, Cam Talbot stays on point to beat Devils

Despite a 30-minute delay, the Wild picked up a 3-2 victory.

Screen Shot 2021-11-24 at 4.10.54 PM

Appeal to find 35-year-old missing from Oak Grove home

Police say he's not believed to be in danger.

vote, election

7 MN Republicans urge states to audit 2020 election results

There has been no evidence of significant fraud in any single U.S. state.

child vaccine pexels

How many MN kids age 5-11 have received a COVID vaccine dose?

The governor says the state has one of the highest child vaccination rates in the U.S.

police lights

Seven juveniles arrested in connection with stolen vehicles in Woodbury

Woodbury authorities have issued a warning following a spate of auto thefts.

police lights squad car dark - Unsplash

1 dead after driver crashes into stalled vehicle on shoulder

The vehicle stopped on the side of the road was unoccupied at the time.

Related

Surprise at ousting of Metro Transit general manager

Brian Lamb will leave the position he has held since 2004.

bus driver seat Pixabay

Charges: Man stabs bus driver numerous times with pen, screwdriver

Officers had to pull the attacker off the 63-year-old driver when they arrived, charges say.

Launch of Metro Transit's C Line

New Metro Transit bus route launches with city's first electric fleet

After years in the making, the C Line made its big debut on Saturday.

Metro Transit suddenly suspends 67 daily bus trips amid driver shortage

The transit company is aggressively trying to hire more drivers.

Charges: Man attacked bus driver over racial slur that never was

The attack was captured on video that went viral on social media.