By Matthew Stott
Friday, February 1, 2013
POLICE said they will not get complacent after figures revealed East Anglia rail passengers enjoyed a safer year on trains and stations in 2012.
Crime and anti-social behaviour offences at Suffolk stations dropped from 137 in 2011 to 96 in 2012, a fall of 30%, according to British Transport Police’s Crime Maps and Statistics website.
Figures taken from 24 stations in Essex, ranging from Harwich to Chelmsford, showed crime fell from 242 in 2011 to 197 in 2012 – a 19% drop.
On-train crime also fell, with 87 crimes reported last year – ten fewer than in 2011.
Colchester station saw a slight fall from 71 to 70 in station crime, while crimes on trains fell from 49 to 36.
Chelmsford saw the most crimes in the region, with 96 reported crimes at the station in 2012 – a fall from 114 in 2011 – and 21 on-train crimes, a rise from 18 in 2011.
Out of the 24 stations surveyed, only six had an increase in on-station crime, while 10 reported an increase in on-train crime.
Out of the 20 Suffolk stations included in the study, only four saw an increase in on-station crime, while six reported an increase in on-train crime.
However, crimes reported on trains in the county increased by 41% – with 59 in 2012 a rise from 42 in 2011.
Ipswich station saw a decline from 78 to 51 crimes at the station, but the amount of crimes reported on trains nearly doubled from 17 to 31.
Inspector James Tyrrell, from British Transport Police (BTP) Colchester, said: “On the whole these figures show that the rail network in these areas of Suffolk and Essex is very safe and crime is on the decrease, which is good news for passengers.
“However, we are not complacent and we will continue to work in partnership with the local communities and the train operating company to deliver a safer travelling environment for all.
“We aim to make sure that people not only are safe, but feel safe too, and officers regularly conduct patrols at these stations to achieve this.
“It’s important that people continue to report any issues of concern they have in their area, as this allows us to identify any problems and set about tackling them.”
Elsewhere in Essex, Clacton station crimes increased from 29 to 37, Manningtree dropped slightly from 22 to 21, and crimes at Frinton station fell from 23 in 2011 to seven in 2012.
On-station crime fell from 15 to one at Thorpe-le-Soken, while Harwich International did not report a single crime at its station.
Crimes at Stansted Airport station climbed slightly from four in 2011 to seven in 2012, with eight on-train crimes, a rise of three from 2011.
Elsewhere in Suffolk, crime figures at Stowmarket station rose from nine to 12, Bury St Edmunds’ more than doubled from five to 11, and Felixstowe reported just one station crime in 2012.
Needham Market, Wickham Market and Melton all saw no reported station crime last year.