BodyTHE chief executive of Reading Buses has assured West Berkshire residents that they are safe to travel on its vehicles – despite being subjected to a spate of recent acts of vandalism in the district.
In a bid to deter further attacks on the company’s buses, Martijn Gilbert also warned that more anti-social behaviour could lead to fare increases and result in fewer buses on the road.
It comes after a bus window was smashed on a Reading Buses vehicle last month – the third incident in the Burghfield and Mortimer area in the last six weeks.
The incident occurred on Saturday, March 24, and involved two customers who had been on the bus, when one of the pair threw an object at the windscreen after getting off the vehicle.
Nobody was hurt and Reading Buses is working with the police to identify the pair, using the bus’s CCTV, which covers both the inside and outside of the vehicle.
Mr Gilbert is hoping previous convictions will serve as a deterrent for further perpetrators, one of whom was fined £1,500.
He said: “These latest incidents give us cause to remind the public that we have recently helped to successfully prosecute people for vandalism – which has resulted in them being fined substantial amounts to help pay for the damage they have caused.
“We are concerned, however, that we are now seeing buses in Burghfield and Mortimer on our lime 2/2a route being targeted by mindless vandals.”
Reading Buses also says that smashed windows or vandalised equipment means buses have to be repaired, which means fewer available to go out on the road.