The chairman of strike-crippled Greyhound visited hospitalized passengers, offered a $25,000 reward for information on a sniper and rode a bus to prove it was safe, but early Tuesday more bullets hit a Greyhound bus in Chicago.
No injuries were reported in Tuesday's shooting on Interstate 57 on Chicago's far South Side. A company spokesman said it was the seventh such incident since a drivers strike began March 2.Greyhound executive Fred G. Currey crisscrossed Florida on Monday, seeking to calm fears about bus travel after a sniper's bullet Sunday hit a Greyhound bus operated by a replacement driver in Jacksonville, Fla., injuring eight passengers.
In Chicago, four shots hit the bus and one bullet, believed to be from a 9mm handgun, was recovered, said Trooper Brian Williams. The 13 passengers aboard continued their journey on another bus bound for Memphis, Tenn.
Company spokesman George Gravely said it was the third shooting incident in Chicago since the first day of the strike, when shots were fired at a bus and a terminal. Other shootings occurred in Ohio, Arizona, Florida and Connecticut.
Gravely said there was nothing to connect the shooting to the strike, "but we don't have buses shot at when we're not negotiating a contract."
"We will not bend or move because of intimidation and violence," Currey insisted before boarding a Greyhound bus from Jacksonville to Orlando, Fla.
He then took a plane to Miami, where he said he was pessimistic about the chances of a settlement any time soon. The union, representing 6,300 drivers and more than 3,000 office and maintenance workers, went on strike over pay and job security.
"We will not raise fares to meet the exorbitant demands of the drivers," said the chairman of America's only nationwide bus service.
The strike has been marked by scattered violence, including a striker crushed to death by a bus operated by a replacement driver in Redding, Calif. A Greyhound bus heading into Hartford, Conn., with 19 passengers was hit by sniper fire Monday. No one was hurt.
"I would say it's probably strike-related because I have been driving for 17 years and was never shot at," said union spokesman Charles True in Hartford.