A bus attendant verbally attacking and asking two female Russian tourists to leave his vehicle in Nha Trang has been suspended from work after videos of the altercation went viral on Facebook on Wednesday.
The incident took place aboard a bus operated by Viet Nhat Co., a transport company headquartered in Ho Chi Minh City with a branch office in Nha Trang, the capital of south-central Khanh Hoa Province.
The three videos posted on Facebook by Taiwanese Celine Lin on Tuesday appear to show the attendant angrily shouting at the women and repeatedly asking the two confused women to "get out" of the vehicle.
Lin’s video captions state that the passengers were traveling from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City with the bus company.
At a stop in Nha Trang, the two Russian tourists involved in the altercation asked to be moved to a window seat because “they felt uncomfortable on the last bus.”
The tourists “tried their best to explain” their request to the bus attendant, who eventually “threatened them and anyone [who didn’t] want to obey his orders,” Lin wrote.
“He threw the women’s bag out of the door twice. And asked them [to] get off the bus, even grabbed the girl.”
The bus attendant was also heard cursing in the video while waving a stick in an attempt to attack a foreign man who was standing outside the bus trying to intervene in the situation.
The Taiwanese concluded her post by claiming that this would be her last visit to Vietnam, continuing that “during the whole trip, [she] didn't have any sense of safety.”
The videos have since gone viral, being shared by thousands of Facebook users in Vietnam, prompting many locals to extend their apologies to foreign tourists for the unfortunate situations many encounter during their trips to the Southeast Asian country.
On Thursday, Le Thi My Thao, director of Viet Nhat Co.’s Nha Trang branch, told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper that the attendant in question, Dang Mau Thanh Binh, was fired shortly after the videos first appeared online.
According to Thao, Binh admitted to improperly treating the tourists during a discussion with company leaders.
The director said the tourists in question had bought their bus tickets from a dealer.
The class of ticket they purchased did not include seat numbers. Instead, passengers were arranged upon boarding the vehicle.
Binh took the tourists to seats 10A and 10B on the bus, but they had asked to move to sit near the windows.
The attendant rejected the request, saying their desired seats were occupied by other passengers who bought tickets, with the seat numbers, directly from the company.
The two sides got into a quarrel, with one of the two foreign women later spitting into Binh’s face, sending him into provoked rage.
“Maybe Binh’s English is not good enough so he failed to explain to the tourists, leading to the quarrel,” Thao told Tuoi Tre.
Binh admitted that he behaved improperly following the ‘attack’ from the tourist. He also said he had thrown the women’s bag out of the bus as he was under intense pressure from the hot weather and other passengers, who were unable to board the bus due to the dispute.
The attendant claimed he only grabbed the stick to threaten the foreign man and did not plan to use the weapon.
Thao said the dispute was eventually resolved and the two tourists in question arrived in Ho Chi Minh City for their flight home.
“They also apologized for their own misbehavior,” Thao said, referring to the spitting of the tourist.
“The resolved problem only became ‘hot’ again when the videos went viral on Facebook.”
Thao added that Binh had worked for her company for more than seven years and was known as a quite calm and moderate employee.
“However, I have to admit that he had made a wrongdoing and the company had to dismiss him,” she added.