Bus and Tram Express
Bus and Tram Express

Manmeet Sharma tragedy: Brisbane bus destroyed, fleet number retired

Jan 11, 2017Uncategorized
Reported in the Sydney Morning Herald: The bus in which a Brisbane bus driver was burnt to death last October has been destroyed, and its fleet number retired, out of respect for slain Manmeet Sharma.
Brisbane bus driver Manmeet Sharma was killed while on duty in October last year.

Brisbane bus driver Manmeet Sharma, killed while on duty in October last year.

Mr Sharma, 29, was a couple of months into his job as a bus driver when he pulled up to a stop along the 125 route in Moorooka to pick up passengers.

Brisbane’s Indian community vows to “keep loving each other” after the death of bus driver Manmeet Sharma.

It was there Anthony O’Donohue allegedly attacked Mr Sharma by throwing accelerant on the Indian-born driver and setting him alight.Mr O’Donohue, 48, has been charged with Mr Sharma’s murder and the attempted murder of the 11 passengers on board the route 125 bus.

Bus S-1980 is in the process of being destroyed and its fleet number will be retired. Photo: Jorge Branco

“The bus was decommissioned prior to Christmas and professional disposal is currently underway,” he said.

Rail Tram and Bus Union assistant state secretary Tom Brown said it was fitting the bus be destroyed, rather than be returned to service.

Brisbane bus driver Manmeet Sharma was killed while on duty in October last year. Photo: Supplied

“They should probably retire the number too, 1980, as well,” he said.

“They probably will because none of our members would want to drive the bus, or that number, again.”

On that point, the council obliged.

“Council has also retired the bus fleet number out of respect for Mr Sharma’s family and his Brisbane Transport peers,” the council spokesman said.

Comment was sought from deputy mayor Adrian Schrinner, the council’s public transport chairman, who broke down in the council chamber last year in the days following Mr Sharma’s death.

“It’s an absolute tragedy and while we can’t change what happened, we can’t change the events of last week, we can ensure that Manmeet’s memory lives on in the people of Brisbane,” he said in November.

Labor opposition leader Peter Cumming said he was “OK with” with the destruction of the bus, but questioned whether it could have been salvaged.

“If it was being destroyed because it was written off, I have no problems with that at all,” he said.

“If it was still worth a lot of money, which I doubt after it had a severe fire through it, you’d wonder whether it was appropriate or not.”

But Cr Cumming conceded it was unlikely drivers would want to get behind the wheel of bus number 1980.

“Anyone who’s superstitious wouldn’t want to go near it again,” he said.

Read the original story in the Sydney Morning Herald here.