Campaign launch to tackle cable theft from railways

A NEW campaign has been launched to tackle railway cable theft in South Elmsall and Moorthorpe.

Network Rail - operator of the UK’s rail infrastructure - the British Transport Police (BTP) and the Association of Train Operating Companies have joined forces to start a new poster campaign aimed at combating the growing crime, which causes delays to thousands of rail passengers every week.

It was launched to coincide with a national day of action against metal theft last Friday.

BTP officers have been carrying out scrap metal dealer checks, lineside cable patrols, leaflet drops and disruption visits to offenders in cable hotspot areas across the region, including in South Elmsall and Moorthorpe.

Asst Chief Const Alan Pacey, from the BTP, said: “Metal and cable theft is one of the biggest challenges we face.

“In a time of falling crime figures, metal theft has risen by more than 70 per cent during the past year and, as a result, has had an enormous impact on the rail passengers across the UK.

“As we jointly launch the new campaign, we are also calling on local people and communities to take an active stand against this crime and pass any information about related criminal behaviour to police.”

Det Insp Mick Jackson, from Operation Leopard - BTP’s dedicated cable and metal theft team - said: “Tackling cable theft is a priority for BTP and we are prepared to do everything within our power to take action against anyone who steals from the railway.

“We will be out and about during the coming days, weeks and months, targeting known hot-spot locations, and making life as difficult as possible for would-be thieves.

“My officers understand the misery caused by cable theft and will go to great lengths to deter thieves from targeting the railway.”