More Police On Rail Network As Rail Crime Falls for Sixth Year

Monday, 24 May, 2010

"Being safe and feeling safe are equally important - which is why we are focusing our efforts on putting more police out on patrol on the rail network in the evenings and at night," said British Transport Police Chief Constable Andy Trotter as BTP announced that crime is down on Britain's railways for the sixth year.

In 2009/10 recorded crime on Britain's railways fell by 7.3%, with violent crime down 6.8% and robberies down 21.8%. BTP also achieved all of its 2009/10 policing plan targets.

"It's important for us to listen to people's concerns and be responsive to them, and we know that people are more concerned about travelling at night.

"Research from Passenger Focus shows that young men under 26 are most concerned, which is understandable as they are the most likely to be assault victims.

"We need to be out there protecting them and reassuring all passengers that the railways really are a very safe environment. By putting more police on patrol in the evenings, we are aiming to address some of those anxieties and boost passenger confidence."

Low level problems remain a concern for passengers, as Passenger Focus's anti-social behaviour report published in February showed. BTP has a target this year (2010/11) to target these offenders, specifically between 8pm and 2am.

Eleven of BTP's 12 crime groups showed reductions in 2009/10. Only sexual offences, with seven more reported crimes than last year, was up (+0.7%).

Over the past three years, violent crime has fallen over nine per cent and robberies by more than a third. For the first time, there were fewer than two robberies a day across the whole network, including the London Underground.

Transport Minister Theresa Villiers said: "I'd like to thank all BTP officers and staff for all the hard work they put in to help make the railways safer.

"However, neither BTP nor the Government are complacent about crime on our railways. Rail passengers and those working on stations and trains rightly expect to be able to travel safely and securely and we will work hard with BTP to continue to make rail travel safer travel for everyone."

Michael Roberts, Chief Executive of the Association of Train Operating Companies (ATOC), said:

"It is good news for passengers that the crime rate on Britain's railways continues to get ever lower.

"Train companies invest significant amounts of money, time and effort into ensuring that passengers are safe on trains and at stations, and these results show that this hard work is clearly paying off.

"However, train companies are not complacent and will keep working hard with the British Transport Police to promote a safe and secure railway."

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