Railways are safer than they’ve been for the past ten years, according to statistics released by British Transport Police (BTP) this week.
Notifiable crimes, which makes up the more serious offences dealt with by the force, fell by six per cent during 2013/14 – meaning there were more than 3,000 fewer victims of crime than the previous year.
There was a reduction of 18 percent in recorded robberies, a 17 per cent drop in theft of passenger property and a 37 per cent fall in theft of cable from the railway.
BTP Chief Constable Paul Crowther said, “The initiatives and operations which have made such an impact during the past 12 months really highlight the advantage our specialist knowledge brings to the railway. By working with the rail companies and passengers, we are able to truly understand the challenges they face and devise innovative solutions to tackle those problems.”
In 2012, theft of passenger property was highlighted by both passengers and train operators as a growing concern, as thieves turned to trains and stations which offered supposed easy pickings.
In response, BTP launched Operation Magnum, an awareness campaign which drew on the knowledge and experience of rail officers and staff to advise passengers about the most common tactics used by thieves – as well as tips to avoid falling victim to those methods.
Chief Constable Crowther added, “We have led the way in combating theft and there can be little doubt that Operation Magnum, which was driven by online content and social media, has had the desired effect with almost 3,000 fewer people falling victim to this type of crime year-on-year.”