An organisation which represents Queensland’s bus industry has warned of a mass exodus of bus drivers if they are not given greater protection while doing their job.

Queensland Bus Industry Council (QBIC)’s Executive Director David Tape says the industry has had enough of drivers being assaulted, robbed, and abused in their workplace.

“A staggering number of our drivers have reported being abused with one in five being physically attacked at the wheel and it must stop now,” he said.

“There were more than 40 reported attacks on bus drivers in Queensland in every year from 2011.

“We need harsher penalties for all offenders who attack bus drivers and the travelling public. Comprehensive risk assessments need to be conducted on our bus networks.”

Mr Tape argued that more needs to be done to provide a safe workplace for the drivers, let alone a safe travelling experience for passengers.

“Drivers will leave the industry if they are afraid that they will be the next victim. How can we increase services and reduce congestion if we do not have sufficient drivers?”