[NT] Tougher sentencing for assaults on bus and taxi drivers

By: Chris Smith


Northern Territory Transport announced tough new penalties for people who attack bus drivers and taxi drivers. Transport Minister Delia

Northern Territory Transport announced tough new penalties for people who attack bus drivers and taxi drivers.

Transport Minister Delia Lawrie says the maximum penalty for common assault on a bus or taxi driver will increase from one to five years.

"Bus drivers and taxi drivers provide a vital public service and deserve protection," she says.

"The Northern Territory Government will introduce the Criminal Code Amendment (Assault on Public Drivers) Bill in the upcoming February sittings.

"This will mean that a person who commits a common assault on a bus or taxi driver will now face up to five years imprisonment compared to a maximum of one year.

"Drivers often work by themselves and during the night which makes them more vulnerable to acts of assault.

"Both industries have made it clear that they want greater protection in place and these tougher penalties will send a clear message that assaulting bus and taxi drivers won’t be tolerated."

People who commit more serious assaults against drivers will face higher penalties.

The Territory Government will continue working with public transport providers to tackle anti-social behaviour.

This week the Territory Government announced more measures to boost safety on the bus network including giving Transport Safety Officers stronger powers to use reasonable force to restrain and detain people.

CCTV cameras installed on every bus and interchange by the Territory Government are assisting police in their investigations to find people committing assaults on drivers.

The new strengthened penalties for assaults on bus and taxi drivers are expected to be in place in May.

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