Lifesaving campaign to help tackle increasing number of railway risk takers in Enfield: You vs Train

Friday 10 May 2019

Lifesaving campaign to help tackle increasing number of railway risk takers in Enfield

Region & Route:
Anglia
Eastern

Network Rail and the British Transport Police (BTP) have launched a new partnership with the English Football League Trust (EFL Trust) and StreetGames to help tackle the increasing number of people in Enfield risking their lives on the railway.

The latest national figures reveal more than 250 incidents a week of people messing about on the railway, taking short-cuts and even selfies – sometimes with tragic consequences for their friends and family.

Over one in 10 (191) of the 1645 incidents in 2018/19 involved young people aged 11-18 trespassing on the railway in Cambridge, Essex, East London, Norfolk, Suffolk and Hertfordshire which make up Network Rail's Anglia route.

Enfield had 64 trespass incidents – the third largest number for a local authority in Anglia - with 8 of those involving young people.

In 2018/19, Pitsea was the trespass hotspot with 116 incidents involving both adults and young people, followed by 54 at Grays level crossing.

The partnerships with football clubs Southend United, Norwich City and Ipswich Town will help to educate young people about taking risks on the railway.

Rupert Lown, Anglia’s director of health, safety quality and environment (HSQE), said: “Children, and adults alike, continue to risk their lives by going onto the track and it has to stop. Last year,1645 people in Anglia went on the railway 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. Working in partnership with these sports charities across the hotspots in  Enfield, Cambridge, Essex, Hertfordshire, and Norfolk and we hope to be able to reach children and teens in those communities most at risk with this incredibly important safety message.”

Local Authority

2018/19 Trespass Incident Count

Thurrock

151

Basildon

134

Enfield (London)

64

Broxbourne

43

Haringey (London)

42

Cambridge

33

Southend-on-Sea

31

Waltham Forest (London)

31

Havering (London)

30

Colchester

30

Ipswich

30

 

Local Authority

2018/19 Trespass Incident Count (Young People)

Thurrock

12

Enfield (London)

8

Southend-on-Sea

7

Havering (London)

7

Suffolk Coastal

7

East Hertfordshire

7

Haringey (London)

6

Uttlesford

6

Braintree

5

Ipswich

5

Harlow

5

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 are still risking their lives.

Responding to the continued problem, the industry’s railway trespass group has this year launched a new phase of the campaign, forming partnerships with the English Football League Trust and StreetGames, to drive the rail safety message directly to this hard-to-reach group.

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.

BTP Assistant Chief Constable Robin Smith said: “The lack of knowledge about the potential dangers seems to be why children choose the tracks as a 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.”

The EFL Trust is the official charity of the English Football League and StreetGames is a charity that runs a network of local projects.

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.”

Stuart Felce, StreetGames Head of Community Safety, said: “We were alarmed to hear how many young children unintentionally risk their lives on the railway every year. Our projects involve working closely with disadvantaged children and young people every day and so we are perfectly placed to help deliver this safety message in a way that we hope will resonate.”

As well as reaching children and teens via The EFL Trust and StreetGames, community engagement managers from across Network Rail, BTP and Train Operating Companies will be out teaching thousands of children about railway safety.

A new film highlighting the hidden dangers of the railway has been launched across social media alongside new content telling the story of Tom - a young boy who suffered life-changing injuries in 2014 when he was electrocuted by the overhead power cables – and his family, to illustrate the life-changing impact that the accident has had on them.

 

 

Notes to Editors

Network Rail, British Transport Police, EFL Trust and StreetGames have identified 48 high-risk trespass locations across Britain, which will be targeted over the coming months. These include:

South London, Croydon, Sittingbourne, Gillingham, Enfield, Ipswich, Norwich, Pitsea, Chelmsford, Reading, Bedminster, Sheffield, Leeds, Derby, Dewsbury, Frizinghall, Rotherham, Nottingham, Doncaster, Birmingham, Stalybridge, Pendleton, Greater Manchester, Rochdale, Coventry, Milton Keynes, Bridgend, Darlington, County Durham, Dalmuir and Shettleston.

About British Transport Police

We are the national police force for the railways. Our aim is to keep you safe and make you feel secure while you travel.

We police Britain’s railways, providing a service to rail operators, their staff and passengers across the country. We also police the London Underground, Docklands Light Railway, the Midland Metro tram system, Croydon Tramlink, Sunderland Metro, Glasgow Subway and Emirates AirLine.

Six million people use the rail network every day and we're here to keep you safe and help you feel secure on your journey.

About StreetGames

StreetGames (www.streetgames.org) is an award-winning national sports charity launched in 2007. A delivery partner of Sport Wales and the Welsh Government, and Sport England, and a national centre of expertise for developing sport in disadvantaged communities. StreetGames helps make people and communities healthier, safer and more successful by making sport accessible to all young people, regardless of their income or social circumstances. It does this by supporting and establishing locally trusted organisations around the UK that deliver doorstep sport. Doorstep sport sessions include positive activities and sport provided to young people when they want it, where they want it and how they want it. Over 2.4 million attendances have already been generated by StreetGames’ programmes. StreetGames has now grown to support over 1,000 locally trusted organisations across the UK. 530,000 children and young people living in the UK’s poorest communities are enjoying a more active lifestyle and the opportunity to volunteer within their local community because of StreetGames.

About the EFL Trust

EFL Trust is a national charity that uses the power of football to change people’s lives.

EFL Trust unites the inspirational work delivered across England and Wales by the dedicated network of Football Club Community Organisations associated to the 72 EFL Clubs.

Last year, the network engaged over 1 million people, using the power of football to improve individual’s health, inspire education, reduce crime, increase participation in activity and tackle many difficult social issues like drug abuse, counter extremism and homelessness.

Contact information

Passengers / community members
Network Rail national helpline
03457 11 41 41

Latest travel advice
Please visit National Rail Enquiries

Journalists
Martin Spencer
Martin.Spencer2@networkrail.co.uk

About Network Rail

We own, operate and develop Britain's railway infrastructure; that's 20,000 miles of track, 30,000 bridges, tunnels and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations. We run 20 of the UK's largest stations while all the others, over 2,500, are run by the country's train operating companies.

Every day, there are more than 4.8 million journeys made in the UK and over 600 freight trains run on the network. People depend on Britain's railway for their daily commute, to visit friends and loved ones and to get them home safe every day. Our role is to deliver a safe and reliable railway, so we carefully manage and deliver thousands of projects every year that form part of the multi-billion pound Railway Upgrade Plan, to grow and expand the nation's railway network to respond to the tremendous growth and demand the railway has experienced - a doubling of passenger journeys over the past 20 years.

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