NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Police say an MTA bus driver was attacked on the job after asking a man to wear a mask.

It happened around 2:30 a.m. Monday near Madison Avenue and East 29th Street in Manhattan.

Police said the 62-year-old driver confronted the man when he attempted to board an M2 bus without a face covering.

The suspect allegedly punched the victim in the face and walked away.

The driver was taken to the hospital to be treated for pain and swelling.

Face coverings are required on buses and other public transportation.

“This is a despicable attack on a hero moving this city during a pandemic and simply trying to protect the safety of all customers.  We are cooperating with the NYPD’s investigation and search for the perpetrator. We recently launched Operation Respect to make masks available for anyone who needs them, have deployed MTA security and staff safety volunteers to assist with mask distribution, and ask all New Yorkers to join in this effort to protect health and safety,” said NYC Transit Interim President Sarah Feinberg.

Anyone with information about the attack is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477), or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). You can also submit a tip via their website or on Twitter, @NYPDTips. All calls are kept confidential.