A large percent of chareidim rely on public transport and often suffer from the caprices of bus drivers. A passenger who took the 450 line from Ashdod to Yerushalayim one night told Bechadrei Chareidim that an Egged driver held passengers hostage for an hour. The journey began with the driver arguing rudely with an elderly woman who, for some reason, decided that she had to disembark before the bus left Ashdod.
“In the middle of the journey, the driver demanded silence from all passengers in the back seats even though everyone was speaking quietly and not disturbing him and there is no regulation against people speaking in back seats,” the passenger recalled. “Then, suddenly, in the middle of the major highway, the driver decided to stop until a passenger whom he claimed was disturbing him disembarked. That particular passenger wasn’t talking at all.”
Children began to cry. After a police vehicle stopped to investigate, the passenger got off to avoid causing everyone more distress.
“After holding us hostage for over an hour, the driver resumed the trip,” said a passenger. “Everyone reached his destination an hour late. It’s very sad that this is the kind of service Egged offers.”