Passengers stand up for driver against assault in Manly
On July 12, 64 year old Harry Familton became the victim of a particularly dangerous assault; punched in the face whilst driving a bus along route 155 in Brookvale.
Remarkably he managed to stop safely without letting any of the ten passengers on board come to harm, locking the bus so that his assailant could be restrained until police arrived.
Harry, who has been a driver for 29 years was extremely grateful to some of his other passengers who restrained his attacker, fending off more swings from the seemingly drug affected man, until police arrived. The man, thought to be in his 50s was arrested by police who then took statements from a handful of passengers.
At around 8pm on Friday night, Harry took notice of his soon-to-be assailant, who stood an unusual distance from the bus stop on Manly’s West Esplanade and was the last passenger to come aboard. It wasn’t long until the unidentified man began to make Harry uncomfortable, complaining about the colour of his ticket, saying that he could not read it and stubbornly standing in the restricted area next to the driver. In spite of Harry’s clear requests to the contrary, the man continually returned to stand next to the cabin, blocking Harry’s view and asking personal questions. Harry did all he could to maintain his focus on the road and continually requested that the man sit back down.
In spite of Harry’s attempts to reign in the problem passenger, he approached the cabin a third time and swung two punches. Luckily, Harry managed to escape serious injury by whipping his head away to avoid the full impact of the blow, simultaneously managing to bring the bus to a safe stop.
Harry expressed gratitude to his other passengers for assisting him.