IT is another sad and worrying indictment of the times we live in.

Today the Daily Echo carries another story regarding a second alleged attack on a taxi driver in Southampton in a matter of days.

The city’s drivers are being warned to be extra vigilant as a result.

By the nature of their job, they have to be alive and alert to potential trouble.

They shouldn’t have to be, of course.

Taxi drivers are there to help us all. Surely all of us have, at some time, had need to thank them.

But they are not alone, are they?

The Daily Echo has previously carried stories of bus drivers coming under attack from stone-throwing hooligans, while assaults on A&E and other hospital staff are now so common as to be hardly deemed newsworthy.

How did this happen? How did our society evolve into one where those who are there to help the public cannot go about their jobs without having to continually look over their shoulders?

It is a major question for the politicians, but one they will not answer easily.

Meanwhile, the streets are not as safe for our taxi drivers as they should be.

Why should those who are most vigilant have to be told to be even more careful?