A bus driver has died in Brisbane after a passenger set him alight

Assistant police commissioner Jim Keogh.

A bus driver has died after being set alight by a passenger in the Brisbane suburb of Marooka, 7km from the CBD.

The incident occurred about 8.55am, Queensland time (9.55am AEDT) on Friday.

A 48-year-old man is in police custody. He has been charged with murder, arson and 11 counts of attempted murder.

The driver, aged 29, has been identified as Manmeet Alisher.

Assistant police commissioner Jim Keogh said the bus had pulled into a stop at a mall with six passengers on board. There were three passengers at the stop and when one boarded, he poured flammable liquid over the driver and then set him alight.

“The fire was substantial, he would have stood little chance,” Keogh said.

He says there was no apparent motive and police have discarded the possibility of a terrorist attack. They believe it was a random attack.

“Words escape me. It’s a horrific incident here in the quiet suburb of Moorooka,” Keogh said.

“A bus driver going about doing his business, supporting the community and has had his life taken from him in what is a senseless and needless act.”

The six passengers were lucky to get off the bus, escaping via the back door, he said. One man kicked open the door to help them escape in an effort Keogh described as heroic, having “jeopardised his own life for the safety of those still on the bus” .

Police are interviewing the passengers and other witnesses, who the assistant commissioner said are traumatised by the incident. Some are being treated for smoke inhalation.

The man alleged to have committed the crime was arrested at the scene and has suffered minor burns. He is assisting police with their inquiries.

The street has been shut down for a homicide investigation.

Here is assistant commissioner Keogh’s media conference:

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