A tram driver was slashed with a knife yesterday when a man putting up posters in the street to complain about tram noise jumped on board the vehicle and attacked him. The attack happened a week before Hongkong Tramways shortens its operational hours by nearly two hours on two of its six routes. The company said the reduction was part of measures to reduce noise nuisance caused by trams early in the morning and late at night. Chung Ching-yuen, 56, had stopped his tram in Percival Street near the junction with Foo Ming Street in Causeway Bay when the attack happened shortly before 3.30pm. A 41-year-old man, an outpatient at a mental hospital, was putting up large posters on the concrete columns of a tram stop at the time of the incident. 'As the tram pulled over at the stop, the suspect stared fiercely at the driver before he got into the tram, reportedly pulled out a knife and attacked the driver,' a police spokesman said. 'After the alleged attack, the assailant jumped out of the tram and fled on foot. The driver, suffering a stab wound on his left wrist, gave chase while shouting for help. His shout alerted officers on board a passing police car. 'After a brief chase, officers stopped and overpowered the suspect.' The man was still holding the knife in his hand when he was subdued by police. No officers were injured in the scuffle. The injured driver was taken to Ruttonjee Hospital in Wan Chai for treatment. The suspect was unhurt but was sent to the same hospital for an examination. Police said the man was being detained for questioning and no charge had been laid. From Monday Hongkong Tramways will cut its operational hours on two routes running between Shau Kei Wan and Western Market and Shau Kei Wan and Happy Valley by nearly two hours. Currently, the earliest departure time for the two routes is about 4.30am. Under the new arrangement, the first tram will leave at about 6am and services will end every night 24 minutes earlier than at present. Managing director Frankie Yick Chi-ming said he expected about 1,500 passengers, mostly senior citizens, would be affected. 'We make this change after considering various requests. The new arrangement has been approved by the Transport Department.'