James O'Brien 10am - 1pm
New Campaign To Reduce Railway Risk Taking Launched
8 May 2019, 08:09
Shocking new figures show that over 250 incidents a week have occurred because of people messing about on the railway – taking short-cuts, capturing photos and even "train surfing."
A 2018 safety campaign reduced incidents involving children by 12%, but Network Rail said children are still responsible for around a third of all cases.
Transport Police will target 48 high-risk trespass locations across Britain, including Croydon, south London; Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire; Dewsbury, West Yorkshire; Bridgend, South Wales; and Dalmuir, West Dunbartonshire.
Network Rail and British Transport Police (BTP) have formed partnerships with two charities - the English Football League Trust and StreetGames - to encourage more young people to stay safe on the railway.
Network Rail's head of passenger and public safety Allan Spence said: "Young people and adults alike continue to risk their lives by stepping out on to the track, and it has to stop.
"Every day we see over three dozen incidents and each one could be a potential catastrophe leading to life-changing injuries or even death.
"Sport is a powerful vehicle for communicating with this hard-to-reach audience, so by working in partnership with these sports charities we hope to be able to reach young people and teens in those communities most at risk with this incredibly important safety message."
BTP Assistant Chief Constable Robin Smith said: "The lack of knowledge about the potential dangers seems to be why young people choose the tracks as a good place to take risks, so our main focus is on providing much-needed education.
"By working closely with the EFL Trust and StreetGames, it will give us the best possible chance of ensuring that the message resonates where it is most needed."