New national partnership launched to tackle increasing numbers of railway risk takers
Network Rail and the British Transport Police (BTP) have launched a new partnership with the English Football League Trust (EFL Trust) and Millwall Community Trust to help tackle the increasing number of people risking their lives on the railway.
New figures released today reveal over 250 incidents a week have been recorded by people messing about on the railway – taking short-cuts, capturing photos and even ‘train surfing’ – sometimes with tragic consequences. Young people (under 18s) make up one of the largest categories, responsible for a third of all cases.
Millwall Community Trust has put in place workshops around the community in schools and their own programmes including Alternative Provision programme and Millwall Regional Talent Centre (RTC) to help educate young people in Southwark and Lewisham.
Allan Spence, head of passenger & public safety at Network Rail, said: “Children, and adults alike, continue to risk their lives by going onto 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 children and teens in those communities most at risk with this incredibly important safety message.”
The ‘You vs. Train’ campaign launched last year by the rail industry and British Transport Police saw incidents involving children reduce by 12%, but young people continue to put themselves at high risk. Responding to the continued problem, the industry’s railway trespass group has this year launched a new phase of the You vs. Train campaign
At the heart of the issue is a lack of understanding and awareness of the risks. Research undertaken amongst teenagers last year found that, while most are aware that the railway is a dangerous place, most of them don’t realise quite how dangerous it is or the specific dangers they face when they step on the track.
Mike Evans, Director of Operations at The EFL Trust, said: “Bringing about positive change in the community is at the very core of The EFL Trust’s values. Football can be an enormous force for good and have a profoundly positive impact on communities – so we are looking forward to helping tackle this issue in those areas where children and young people are particularly vulnerable.”
To watch the new video and find out how to keep your children safe on the railway visit: