We’re committed to improving safety in our stations and encourage everyone to look out for each other.
We remind revellers to keep a clear head around the railway after drinking.
In December 2016 we launched our Keep a Clear Head campaign together with British Transport Police (BTP) and RSSB after new data revealed there's a 25 per cent rise in alcohol-related incidents on the railway in December compared with the start of the year. Data collected over the last 10 years also shows there are also more incidents involving alcohol reported in December than in any other month.
Those who live near or may be out near level crossings are advised to take extra care. Many people may be visiting family and friends in areas they are unfamiliar with, and there are many crossings within a mile of pubs and clubs.
Passengers should also be careful when around the platform edge after having a drink, with 25 people killed due to alcohol-related incidents and a further 82 people seriously injured over the last 10 years.
According to BTP there is also a rise in violence at many of the busiest stations over the festive season, much of which is fuelled by excess alcohol. Between 24 November 2015 and 2 January 2016, the number of violent offences reported at railway stations across England, Scotland and Wales increased by eight per cent compared with the same period in 2014/15. At least one in 10 of those offences involved alcohol.
Drinking alcohol can make us more vulnerable or prone to accidents as it slows down the brain which can affect the body’s responses. The more you drink, the more likely you are to take a risk. Alcohol affects our judgement and reasoning, slows down reactions, upsets our balance and coordination and can even impair vision and hearing. The best way to keep the risks from alcohol to a low level is to plan your night out in advance; make sure you know how you will be getting home and that you have people you trust with you. While out, you should limit the total amount of alcohol you consume, drink more slowly, with food, and alternate with water.
We encourage everyone to Lend a Helping Hand
Launched in 2015, our Lend a Helping Hand campaign encourages people to be more aware of other passengers when boarding and alighting trains to help reduce platform-related accidents.
The campaign’s success is in its simplicity: slow down, look, listen and think, and be kind and considerate to fellow passengers. Being aware reduces the number of slips, trips and falls and makes everybody’s journey safer, helping us achieve our vision of getting everyone home safe every day.
We know that the average number of slips, trips and falls in stations is 20 per cent higher in December than in any other month. Over 550 incidents were recorded in stations in December 2014 – the highest number in 10 years.
On average, people report 396 accidents each month within the 2,500 stations on the rail network – 18 of which we manage. The number of accidents reported jumps to 480 in December.
Posters displayed in stations, the Lend a Helping Hand website and #helpie on Twitter remind passengers of simple advice to improve everyone’s journey.
Suggestions include giving extra time and space to older people or parents with pushchairs, keeping friends who have been drinking away from the platform, and being patient when getting on and off trains.