Joint operation launched to help keep rail passengers safe over festive period
British Transport Police (BTP) and Transport for Wales (TfW) have launched a joint operation to boost passenger safety over the Christmas period.
The return of Operation Genesis will see additional police officers and rail staff working across the network to help passengers who need assistance.
Police patrols will be increased on trains and at stations and plain-clothes officers will also be deployed, with the busiest days of the week, Fridays and Saturdays, particularly targeted.
Operation Genesis was first introduced last December and resulted in an overall reduction 0f 17.8% in crime, compared with December 2021.
Assaults and violent offences on the network both fell by 5% while sexual offences and public order offences both fell 3%. In all, 28 people are arrested on suspicion of a variety of crimes, including being drunk and disorderly, theft, sexual offences, assault, possession of illegal substances, trespass, homophobic abuse and other offences.
More than 100 people were ejected from stations while 100 ‘stop and account’ instances took place. ‘Stop and account’ means that a police officer stops a member of the public to ask them voluntarily to account for behaviour or actions, or to ask a person what they are carrying, where they are going, what they are doing in the area or any other questions about their conduct.
BTP Superintendent for Wales, Andy Morgan, said: “Christmas time can be a time of fun and enjoyment for many and we want all those celebrating to have a great time and feel safe, so we will be working with our partners at Transport for Wales to do all we can to ensure this is the case, across Wales.
“Experiencing crime on the rail network is rare and travelling on a train remains one of the safest ways to travel. However, during busy periods throughout December, there are many more people out and about and, inevitably, some people consume too much alcohol. Drinking too much alcohol does affect judgement and people often take greater risks when under the influence and behaviour can deteriorate. Poor behaviour is unacceptable, and we will take a zero-tolerance position when this is the case.
Leyton Powell, Transport for Wales Safety, Sustainability and Risk Director, added: “It’s great to see so many people coming out to celebrate the festive season and choosing public transport to get you home is an excellent option.
“This year again we are working with our partners at British Transport Police and our security teams, and we will have an enhanced presence at some of our busiest stations. We hope everyone enjoys themselves, but please remember to behave safely and respect other passengers and our staff at all times.”
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