A Bradford bus driver refused to leave his protected cab as a group of five yobs kicked and punched a pensioner to the floor in front of him - because of 'health and safety' reasons.
Fred Gilroy, 68, was set-upon by the youths after he confronted over their unruly behaviour, which included shooting him in the ear with a pellet gun.
Mr Gilroy had been travelling in the upper deck of the First 636 service in Bradford when the teens on the back seat started misbehaving.
He said a First member of of staff came upstairs to talk to them, but backed off and later left the us after they hurled abuse at him.
Then, one of the yobs shot Mr Gilroy with a pellet gun and threatened to rip his head off. He told the Express: "One [pellet] hit me on the ear. It stung, so I said to them:, 'Come on, lads, there's a bit of fun but this is going a bit too far.' They told me they'd rip my head off."
Mr Gilroy then he went downstairs to speak to the driver, who pulled over.
However, the youths came downstairs, surrounded him and carried out an attack.
Mr Gilroy told the Telegraph and Argus: "They were all round me. I slung a punch myself, but it would have been like a feather duster to them at that age. They were jumping on the seats and drop-kicking. They got me down in two minutes."
The driver called the emergency services, and Mr Gilroy was taken to hospital with severe bruising.
He later rang First to complain about its security procedures, but he said the woman he spoke to even questioned him about what he had been doing on the top deck.
He said: "The safety of people travelling during the day on the bus is at stake. If this occurs again, if a gang of lads get on, the way she was talking, they can run riot. That can't be right. They should have some quick way of getting security to that bus."
According to the Daily Mail, a First spokesman said: "We would urge anyone with information to go to the police to help catch these vile individuals.
"Our drivers are encouraged to do all that they can to assist our passengers in such difficult circumstances. As part of this process they have to consider their own safety and that of all other passengers on board the vehicle.
"If they do not feel that leaving their cab is a safe course of action then we would expect them to raise the alarm so that the emergency services can be called."
Local councillor, Sinead Engel, has now backed Mr Gilroy in demanding the bus company does more to protect its customers, telling the Telegraph and Argus: "Passengers have every right to expect to be safe travelling on buses and bus drivers have a duty of care to protect them.
"I wouldn't want to see drivers putting themselves at risk unnecessarily, but I certainly wouldn't have been able to just stand by and watch."
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