'Dark Days:' Austin Bus Hijacker Was Capital Metro Employee
This weekend, a man hijacked a Capital Metro bus – resulting in a police pursuit that lead to Bastrop before the hijacker killed himself.
Today, Capital Metro announced the man that took the bus was one of their own: Salvador Martinez, a bus operator employed by Cap Metro contractor McDonald Transit. Martinez’s tenure with Cap Metro dated back to 1998.
The transportation authority says it’s offering grief counseling to employees. Here’s Cap Metro on Twitter:
Dark days. The person who hijacked a capmetro bus on Saturday was a bus driver. We grieve for our colleague and his family
— Capital Metro (@CapMetroATX) April 22, 2013
Below, a press release from Cap Metro:
STATEMENT FROM CAPITAL METRO REGARDING THE BUS HIJACKING INCIDENT
On Saturday, April 20, at approximately 4:30 p.m., Salvador Martinez, an off-duty bus operator employed by Capital Metro contractor McDonald Transit, hijacked a Capital Metro bus in south Austin and ordered the bus operator and two passengers off of the bus. The on-duty operator followed the established protocol for emergencies to ensure the safety of the passengers, who were unharmed during the incident.
Mr. Martinez drove the bus to Bastrop, where he died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. He had been an employee of McDonald Transit since August 2012, and had been placed on suspension in February 2013.
Prior to his employment with McDonald Transit, Mr. Martinez was employed by Star Tran, Capital Metro’s private non-profit contractor from 1998 to 2012.
All of Capital Metro contractors are well-trained in emergency procedures, which also includes refresher training. In addition, Capital Metro equips its buses with a variety of safety features that allow its bus operators to contact the dispatch office and first responders in the event of an emergency such as this.
We are continuing to cooperate with authorities during their ongoing investigation. Grief counseling is being provided to McDonald Transit and Capital Metro employees today at the agency’s headquarters.
The management and employees of Capital Metro would like to offer their heartfelt condolences to the family and coworkers of Mr. Martinez during this very difficult time.