Tuesday 18 Nov 2003


Region & Route:
South East
Network Rail and the British Transport Police have teamed up to remind children to stay off the line and stay alive following an increase in rail crime and trespass incidents near Clay Lane level crossing and Fishbourne Station, Chichester. There have been over 38 acts of route crime carried out locally in the last year with children interfering with the level crossing equipment and vandalising railway property, causing delays to both road users and rail passengers. Every single act of route crime has the potential to cause serious harm or even death and can have long-term effects for those involved.  Not only is there the danger from the trains themselves, but also a risk of electrocution. Anyone who sees somebody trespassing on the railway or doing anything else that they should not, is urged to report it to the British Transport Police on 0800 40 50 40. The number is open 24 hrs a day and the calls are free. Margaret Barker, Network Rail’s Route Crime Risk Manager said, “ We are concerned about the unacceptable levels of trespass and vandalism at Clay Lane. What might seem like a bit of childish fun is in reality plain stupidity, which could end up with someone being killed. The railway is not a playground and children and adults alike should stay away.” She added, “We are working hard to tackle this issue but I would appeal to the local schools, the community and parents to help us in our efforts. Real success in tackling rail crime will only come about if the entire community works together with the rail industry in a concerted effort to make children understand the very real dangers of risking theirs and others lives by playing on the railways.” Chief Inspector Otter, British Transport Police added, “Both adults and children need to understand the serious implications of trespassing and misbehaving on the railways. Although joint efforts to highlight the dangers in the area are proving successful, we still need your help and support to reduce the number of incidents. People need to understand that they are dicing with death.”

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