Rail industry issue warning following evening of 'mindless' and dangerous vandalism

  • Rail community issues warning following 100 minutes of mindless vandalism near Sileby
  • Youths left things on tracks and broke train windows 
  • Public urged to report trespassers and help educate children of the dangers 

East Midlands Railway (EMR), British Transport Police and Network Rail are urging parents in Sileby to ensure their children understand the severe consequences of trespassing or carrying out vandalism on or near the railway.

On Thursday, 27 June, in a period of 100 minutes, five incidents were reported close to the village which saw train windows being smashed and services hitting items deliberately left on the track - including road signs.

These incredibly irresponsible acts endangered the lives of both staff and customers - as well as the youths who were seen trespassing. They also led to delays to services and were frightening for EMR staff working on the trains and passengers.

EMR, Network Rail, and British Transport Police are appealing to the public, including parents, to make sure that children are reminded of the dangers associated with playing on or near railway lines - especially as the country will soon head into the summer holiday break.

Lucy Gallacher, Emergency Planning Manager at East Midlands Railway, said: "These mindless incidents put lives at risk and lead to trains being damaged, delayed, and services being cancelled.

"Even though we are putting in place a number of measures to help address the issue, everyone in Sileby can help us keep people safe. If they see anyone playing on or near the railway, please let authorities know - their call could save a life.

"Also, especially with the summer holidays approaching, we are asking parents of the village to educate their children about the dangers of playing near the railways or placing objects on them."

British Transport Police local Inspector Rich Kane said: "Any act of anti-social behaviour on or around the rail network is not tolerated and deliberate acts to harm or endanger the lives of others will always be a priority of ours.

"If you see anything that doesn’t look right or feel you or others may be in danger, please text us on 61016 or call 0800 40 50 40."

Hayley Manners, Network Rail’s community safety manager in the East Midlands, said: “Britain’s railways are some of the safest in the world, but people who carry out reckless actions such as these endanger their own life and the lives of passengers and train crew.”

“Network Rail works hard to educate people on the risks of trespass and vandalism, carrying out school visits, pop-up community events, and much more to help people understand the potentially deadly consequences of their actions.

Our ‘You vs Train’ campaign aims to raise awareness about the dangers people put themselves, and others, in when they make the choice to stray onto the rail network unauthorised.”

List of incidents - Thursday, 27 June

19:00: The driver of the St Pancras to Sheffield service reported a loud bang from beneath the train in the Sileby area, believed to be caused by items placed on the track.

19:03: The driver of the Leicester to Nottingham service reported a broken outer window, caused by stone-throwing in the Sileby area.

20:10: The driver of the Sheffield to St Pancras service reported striking debris on the tracks in the Sileby area, including a metal road sign. The driver stopped to remove the items.

20:13: Upon arrival in Leicester, the driver of a service discovered a broken train window, likely sustained while passing through Sileby.

20:20: The driver of the St Pancras to Sheffield service observed youths placing objects on the track in the Sileby area. The driver stopped to clear the debris and observed the youths leaving the railway.

20:42: The driver of the Sheffield to St Pancras service reported removing part of a trampoline from the tracks in the Sileby area.

Contact Information

East Midlands Railway Press Office