NEIGHBOURHOOD policing is now driving crime down on the trains.
Such policing is the latest way the police target anti-social behaviour and the British Transport Police have set up teams in West Yorkshire.
The teams began work in October, 2006, and since then there has been an 18% reduction in anti-social behaviour across key rail routes, including in Kirklees.
The teams consist of one inspector, two sergeants, five constables and 12 police community support officers.
They patrol trains, stations and platforms to provide a reassuring high-visibility uniformed presence. They often carry out airport-style searches at stations to catch people who carry weapons.
Insp Brian Buddo said: “The key is listening to members of the local community and working with them to develop tailor-made solutions for their local policing needs.
“Anti-social behaviour has been raised as an issue, so high on our agenda is reassuring passengers and staff by reducing anti-social behaviour and other low-level disorder that contribute to the fear of crime.
“We want people to tell us if they are concerned about something so we can help.”
Team members talk to passengers who regularly use the stations as well as shops and pubs near stations to find out their concerns.
The Neighbourhood Policing Teams have also set up a website packed with information about the railways – especially crime and safety issues – and how to contact officers.
The website is www.teachingzone.org/btpnorth
Clr Ryk Downes, the chairman of public transport coordinating group Metro, said: “Recorded incidents represent a fraction of a percentage of the 220m bus and train journeys made each year, so public transport remains one of the safest forms of travelling in West Yorkshire.
"Our partnerships with the British Transport Police are a key element of that success, as can be seen by the reduction in the number of incidents of anti-social behaviour on the rail network.’’
The BTP website – www.btp.police.uk – is to get a Neighbourhood Policing section, with contact information and details of operations and campaigns.