Lisburn and Castlereagh Policing and Community Safety Partnership (PCSP), in collaboration with local PSNI officers and Translink, took advantage of Bus + Train Week to promote a crime prevention and safety campaign for users of public transport.
PCSP representatives and PSNI officers were in attendance at Lisburn Train and Bus Stations at various times during the week promoting crime prevention and safety whilst using public transport. Passengers were encouraged to engage with officers and avail of the educational material that was on offer.
Commenting on the initiative, Lisburn and Castlereagh PCSP Chairperson Alderman Michael Henderson MBE commented: “This campaign was targeted at promoting personal safety for the public concerning the use of local transport and indeed incorporated the dangers of young persons running across railway lines along with causing a general nuisance in the vicinity of railway halts. Indeed I know that this is of concern at present in respect of the railway halts at Lambeg and Hilden. Such occurrences are taken seriously by both Translink NI and PSNI.”
Welcoming the opportunity to get the PSNI’s crime prevention message out to the public, District Commander for the Lisburn and Castlereagh area, Superintendent Sean Wright said: “This has been a very worthwhile event, not only in targeting people who are heading to work, but also a lot of elderly people who avail of free rail travel, as well as young people using public transport to and from college or school. This proved to be a good mechanism for getting our crime prevention message out there.”
Highlighting the importance of the public safety campaign, Translink Assistant Service Delivery Manager Gemma McMurray said: “Safety is our top priority. Many young people are oblivious to the very real dangers of ‘messing around’ near railway stations and tracks. They are putting themselves and the lives of other rail users at severe risk without thinking of the consequences of their actions.
“We would appeal to parents and carers to remind young people to stay away from railway tracks. By working together, we can prevent potentially dangerous incidents of trespass and dangerous behaviour on platforms and near railway tracks. What might seem to be a bit of harmless fun or simple carelessness can quickly turn into a very dangerous situation”.
Meanwhile, the Chairman of the Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council’s Development Committee, Councillor Uel Mackin, joined Translink officials during Bus + Train Week (June 5 - 11) to encourage more local people to use public transport.
“Whilst I recognise that bus and train travel will not suit all occasions, nevertheless it is my belief that greater use can be made of our public transport so I would like residents to leave the car at home and use their local bus or train as much as possible, whether for a day out with the family or commuting to work,” Cllr Mackin said.
“Public transport plays a vital role in our community as it promotes sustainability, social inclusion and accessibility to make the Lisburn Castlereagh area a wonderful place to live, work and visit.”