Police in Swindon are investigating an alleged road rage attack which witnesses say saw a cyclist punched to the floor in front of his son by a Stagecoach bus driver who had tried to knock the adult rider off his bike after becoming "impatient" at the pair not using a cycle lane.
Wiltshire Police has appealed for witnesses and a spokesperson for Stagecoach confirmed the bus company is "supporting" officers with their investigation of the incident which happened at around 5.30pm last Tuesday (February 21) on East Wichel Way in Swindon.
The alleged road rage attack happened at a busy time and witnesses said the scene unfolded in front of children and parents returning home from school.
One witness Jacqui Kaniki told the Gazette & Herald, which published a photo from just after the incident as passers-by remonstrated with the driver, there was a dispute which led to the driver leaving the single-decker bus to confront the cyclist.
"The cyclist and his son were in front of the bus but they were not in the cycling lane," Ms Kaniki, who had just got off the bus along with her 11-year-old son when the attack happened, explained. "They were on the road and the bus was travelling behind them. The driver was getting impatient and tried to knock the cyclist off his bike and then got off the bus and there was an argument.
"The bus driver hit the man. He punched the cyclist a couple of times in the head in front of the other passengers. The cyclist was wearing protection on his head and fell to the ground. He didn't try to fight back.
"I was trying to film and photograph it with my mobile phone but my hands were shaking. It was horrendous. The man on the ground got up and his son started to record it. There were other people who tried to get the bus driver off him.
"The driver just got back on the bus and drove off. His face was just stone cold after what happened."
Addressing the report, a Wiltshire Police spokesperson said the force is "appealing for witnesses after a cyclist was assaulted by a bus driver".
"The cyclist, a man in his 40s, reports he was cycling with his 11-year-old son when a bus overtook them very closely around 5.40pm," the spokesperson confirmed. "When he tried to alert the driver by knocking on the window, the bus stopped and the driver got out. The cyclist was punched several times.
"It's believed several people witnessed the assault, and we'd like to hear from anyone who can help with our enquiries. Please contact us on 101 quoting reference number 54230019502."
A spokesperson for Stagecoach also confirmed that the bus company is "supporting the police with their investigation into the circumstances involved in an incident on 21 February."
Dan joined road.cc in 2020, and spent most of his first year (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. At the start of 2022 he took on the role of news editor. Before joining road.cc, Dan wrote about various sports, including football and boxing for the Daily Express, and covered the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for The Non-League Paper. Part of the generation inspired by the 2012 Olympics, Dan has been 'enjoying' life on two wheels ever since and spends his weekends making bonk-induced trips to the petrol stations of the south of England.