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The number to text to report rail crime - 61016 - full report

If you travel on the trains then it might be worth putting this text number in your mobile phone: 61016 is a new text service launched today by British Transport Police to report crime on our railways.

Anything from anti social behaviour to vandalism can be reported discreetly which it's hoped will identify problem routes and help catch offenders.

Our transport correspondent Mike Pearse reports and speaks to Dep Ch Const Paul Crowther and Sara Nelson of Passenger Focus.

Text to beat travel crimes - video report

Transport Police are to use new technology in a major crackdown on crime and anti-social behaviour on trains.

From today passengers who see or witness anything suspicious can alert officers by text. Police say it should help them build up a better picture of where to target resources.

Our Transport Correspondent Mike Pearse reports and speaks to Dep Ch Const Paul Crowther of British Transport Police.


Crime text initiative welcomed

People can reporte crime to British Transport Police via text Credit: PA

The news that rail passengers can report crimes to British Transport Police via text message has been welcomed.

David Sidebottom, Passenger Focus director, said: “Passengers tell us that they generally feel safe on the railway, however, they will welcome this initiative as it will provide them with an easy way to highlight the problems they come across.”

DCC Crowther, of BTP, added: "Low-level anti-social behaviour, which we know occurs on trains often later at night and when people have been drinking, is undoubtedly under-reported.

“We hope that the ease of being able to send a quick text message will encourage more passengers to report incidents."

Hopes that more crime will be reported

BTP hopes that rail passengers will be more likely to report incidents such as anti-social behaviour, if they can do so via text message.

Deputy Chief Constable, Paul Crowther said: Text messaging is a quick and everyday way to communicate and we know passengers want to be able contact us this way.

“By encouraging passengers to also report incidents via text, we hope we'll get a more complete picture of the sort of low-level but all too common incidents that affect people’s journeys across the network.

“However, text messages should never be sent in an emergency situation as there are no guarantees that they send correctly or are received promptly.”