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Published on : Monday, April 18, 2016
Rail industry partners are appealing for information after a spate of cable crime on the railway which has caused significant disruption in Nottinghamshire.Thieves have attempted to steal cable seven times in the last four weeks – including this weekend – leading to travel misery for thousands of passengers caught up in delays and cancellations.
The result was:
331 passenger services and 27 freight/engineering trains delayed or cancelled
2,654 minutes of disruption for passengers
A cost to the railway of £119,165
With investigations well under way, Network Rail, East Midlands Trains and the British Transport Police are stepping up the fight against would-be cable thieves and are asking anyone who can provide information that leads to the arrest, prosecution and conviction of those responsible.
Gary Walsh, area director for Network Rail in the East Midlands, said: “Cable theft is not a victimless crime – far from it. Train delays and cancellations directly affect people getting to work, visiting family and travelling to hospital appointments.
“Cable thieves disrupt people’s lives and we will continue working with British Transport Police to protect the rail network upon which our economy relies. We are well versed in defending the railway from such crime which is demonstrated by the fact only one of six attempted thefts saw any cable stolen, but on every occasion the disruption to passengers was hard felt.”
Detective Inspector Gareth Davies from British Transport Police said: “This spate of incidents has caused huge disruption to passengers and the rail network – not to mention the serious financial implications for the rail industry.“Directed patrols are now being carried out across the area – including officers patrolling on foot, in vehicles and with police dogs – to catch and deter criminals.
“We also have a dedicated team of officers currently investigating a number of leads and we are doing all we can to find those responsible, but I would like to urge members of the public and scrap metal businesses to be vigilant and report any information, including suspicious people or vehicles near the railway, which may help us stop such crimes taking place and catch those responsible.
“The railway is also an extremely dangerous environment and anyone who risks their lives – while disrupting those of others – by carrying out this sort of crime needs to be found.Andrew Conroy, Acting Customer Experience Director for East Midlands Trains said: “It’s really frustrating that our customers’ journeys keep being disrupted by these cable thieves. We will continue to work with the British Transport Police and Network Rail to do everything we can to stamp out this criminal activity and reduce the impact on our customers.
“Anybody who has been disrupted on our services may be entitled to compensation for the inconvenience caused, and information on our Delay Repay compensation scheme can be found at eastmidlandstrains.co.uk/information/delay-repay”.