SA driver assault laws

Tougher penalties for assaulting public transport workers in South Australia announced

Those who attack public transport staff in South Australia (SA) now face up to 25 years in jail under changes announced by the SA Government this week.

The move comes in response to an increase in driver assaults and extra security guards will also be deployed and a public awareness campaign introduced, in efforts to protect bus, train and tram workers.

"These tougher penalties send a clear message that any act of violence towards public transport workers will not be tolerated," SA transport minister Stephen Mullighan says.

"Now if you assault bus, train or tram drivers, or our passenger service assistants, you will face up to 25 years imprisonment.

"Everybody deserves to feel safe from harm in their workplace and even one assault is too many."

The new laws will be supported by additional safety measures across the Adelaide Metro network.

"Wilson Security will introduce mobile patrols that will cover bus and rail networks as well as maintaining a presence at major stations and interchanges whilst on patrol," Mullighan says.

Security guards are on every train, every night and on every tram on Friday, and weekend nights, and at key locations across the SA public transport network.

"This highly visible and proactive approach will complement other security measures already in place across our public transport network and improve safety for staff and commuters," Mullighan says.

SA police minister Peter Malinauskas says an extensive public awareness campaign will offer a cash incentive of up to $1000 for information provided to police that leads to a conviction.

"We need to get the message out that any assault on public transport workers will not be tolerated and anyone caught faces up to 25 years imprisonment," he says.

Posters and stickers will feature on buses, trains and trams throughout Adelaide Metro network.

Those who suspect a serious crime is in progress or have just seen, or been involved in a crime should call 000 immediately.

Anyone who witnesses any non-urgent illegal behaviour on the SA public transport network are advised to call the police assistance line on 131 444.

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