More body worn security cameras for rail staff due to anti-social behaviour
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ScotRail plans to more than triple its number of body worn cameras in a bid to tackle anti-social behaviour on its rail network.
The train operator will roll out more than 1000 new body cameras by the end of this month, replacing its existing suite of 350 body cameras, while increasing the number of units available to frontline staff.
The introduction of the new devices is part of a £1.6million investment to tackle anti-social behaviour on Scotland’s railway.
ScotRail first introduced body worn cameras in 2017, following a successful trial. During the trial, the train operator found that customers positively changed their behaviour when they were informed that they were being recorded.
Since then, body cameras have proven to be invaluable in providing evidence on incidents, such as assaults on staff, with successful prosecutions resulting from their use.
Other initiatives include increasing the number of frontline staff, particularly on late night trains on key routes, and the recent expansion of the train operator’s Travel Safe Team.
ScotRail’s Travel Safe Team was initially introduced in October 2021, before expanding in autumn 2022, working closely with British Transport Police (BTP) to support customers and colleagues in the promotion of a safe railway environment, both on train and in stations.
The team was designed to be a reactive resource with the ability to quickly focus on emerging hot spots. They actively engage and educate individuals and groups on the impact of unsafe behaviours when on or around the railway.
Since its introduction, ScotRail has seen a drop in reported events during, and after, anti-social behaviour exercises.
David Lister, ScotRail safety, engineering and sustainability director, said: “ScotRail is committed to tackling anti-social behaviour on Scotland’s railway.
“Body worn cameras play an important role in deterring criminal behaviour and supporting potential prosecutions. By increasing the number of units available to our people, it means that anyone who wants to use a body camera has the option to do so.
“Safety is our top priority, and together with our Travel Safe Team, these cameras play a crucial role in ensuring a secure work environment for our customers and colleagues.”
Jim Gray, RMT ScotRail co-ordinator, said: “The RMT union fully supports the use of body worn cameras to tackle anti-social behaviour.
“It’s great to see ScotRail increasing the number of units available for frontline staff to more than 1000, meaning a camera is available for anyone who wants one."