Updated 5.30pm with MPT statement

A man who was seen beating up a bus driver along a busy San Ġwann thoroughfare yesterday afternoon has been identified, the police said. 

The 28-year-old from Qormi was approached last night, the police confirmed, but it is still not yet known whether he was been arrested. 

CCTV footage taken from the bus being operated during yesterday’s incident clearly shows that the bus driver was assaulted during the course of his duty without any provocation, Malta Public Transport said this evening. 

The bus was stationary at a roundabout waiting for traffic to be able to move. The footage clearly shows that the bus driver was first assaulted by a man through the window while the bus driver was in the driving seat, with the result that the bus driver’s glasses ended up on the road. It also appears that while the driver was making a phone call to report the incident, he was pulled out of the bus by his aggressor.

“We are shocked by this vicious attack on one of our drivers,” said Konrad Pule, general manager at Malta Public Transport.

“We condemn this incident unreservedly and we are offering our driver all the support that he needs. We are taking this incident very seriously and we will provide all the necessary information and support to the police to take this case further.”

The incident brought traffic on the busy junction to a standstill.

CCTV footage shows driver trying to report the incident.CCTV footage shows driver trying to report the incident.

... before he was pulled out.... before he was pulled out.

Video shot by a commuter and uploaded to social media shows a Malta Public Transport bus at a standstill halfway round a roundabout on Triq tal-Balal, as two men push, grapple and wrestle each other against the side of the bus. 

Eyewitnesses told Times of Malta they saw a man driving along the road before he suddenly got out of his car, hauled the bus driver out of the bus and began wrestling him. They said they did not know what prompted the violent outburst, which happened at around 3.45pm.

The tussle was a bit of a mismatch, with a big, burly and bald man overpowering his smaller rival and getting him into a headlock. In one video, the man can be seen trying to smash the driver's head against the bus windows. 

Attempts by the larger man's partner, a red-headed woman wearing a mustard coloured top, to separate the two men were ignored, with the colossus angrily telling her to "get back to the boy".

Eyewitnesses said they could hear children crying in the back of the man's car. 

"I could hear them cry 'Daddy, daddy, daddy!' while the fight was going on," they said. 

Video: Facebook

As commuters honked their horns, a white-haired man exited his vehicle and tried to break up the fight, to no avail. 

The fight eventually died down and the burly man involved in the fight sped off before wardens arrived on the scene, eyewitnesses said. 

A Malta Public Transport spokeswoman said the company was "very disturbed" by the incident and would be forwarding video footage to police.

"We have spoken to the driver, who has been referred to the polyclinic although it does not appear that he has serious injuries," the company spokeswoman said.

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