Virgin Trains has announced that it is rolling out more body-worn cameras for station staff and on-board teams to use.
This follows on from the successful introduction of cameras last year.
After becoming the first UK train operator to provide the cameras to its frontline staff, the train operator is equipping a further 250 people with cameras, bringing the total to 500.
These will primarily be used by staff working across the network, including station staff and on-board teams.
The pilot between February 2018 and September 2018 saw a reduction in assaults on Virgin Trains staff.
In another first for the rail industry, Virgin Trains granted the British Transport Police direct access to footage from the cameras to carry out investigations where needed, thanks to a state-of-the-art cloud-based system.
What did the officials say?
Dave Whitehouse, Safety Director at Virgin Trains, said:
“The safety of our staff and customers is paramount, and body worn cameras play an important role in helping us to keep our network safe.
“The feedback is that our staff feel more confident and reassured wearing the equipment while working on the network. It’s only natural that more of our people should have access to using it.
“Body Worn Cameras act as a deterrent, but if one of our people is subjected to an assault or there is another incident involving our customers, the technology is also there to quickly provide evidence to the British Transport Police.”
Sergeant Lakhveer Singh, of British Transport Police, said:
“Virgin Trains announcement of more body worn cameras for their staff has the full support of British Transport Police. We know from experience that body worn video is a fantastic piece of kit, that helps us in securing convictions against those who target staff with unnecessary violence or abuse.”
Colin Stanford, Managing Director at Pinnacle, which provided the cameras, said:
“This initiative has improved safety and reduced abuse towards staff immeasurably. As a result, other train operating companies throughout the UK and Europe have followed suit.”
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