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GRAFFITI idiots on our public transport system are costing taxpayers $75,000 in clean-up costs every day.
But police and rail authorities say they’re making headway with some big recent arrests.
Last week a pair of reckless teenagers, Noel Charlesworth and Dane Barrington, pleaded guilty at Lithgow Local Court after they trashed a train on the Blue Mountains line in February.
Train clean ups are costing up to $75,000 a day thanks to vandals.
Seats were allegedly torn up and piled at the rear of the carriage during the incident. Picture: NSW Police Force
CCTV released following a brutal attack on a late night Blue Mountains trains in February. Picture: NSW Police Force
A badly vandalised Sydney train. Picture: InstagramThe pair caused havoc on the late night service by removing all the seats from the upper deck of a carriage and piling them up at the rear. It blocked the stairwell and left weary commuters seething.
Already this year four sentences have been handed down resulting in jail time for two vandals and almost $40,500 in fines.
With new technologies being employed and more than 10,000 CCTV cameras in operation across the rail network, Police Transport Command and Sydney Trains said they were winning the war on graffiti.
“Due to the dedicated work of officers from the PTC, there was a significant decrease in malicious damage incidents on the public transport network between 2015 and 2016,” PTC Assistant Commissioner Max Mitchell said.
This year four sentences have been handed down resulting in jail time for two vandals and almost $40,500 in fines in relation to train vandalism.“Officers from the PTC are highly trained at catching those who graffiti or cause damage to the public transport network. We work closely with Sydney Trains who supply CCTV footage of incidents, conduct covert operations, and use social media platforms to identify criminals and put them before the courts.”
Last year police made 167 arrests for malicious damage on trains. There were 265 charges laid as a result.
Sydney Trains chief executive Howard Collins said the money spent on cleaning up graffiti was a waste that could be better spent on improving services.
“Graffiti is a blight on Sydney rail commuters. It causes delays and is expensive to clean up,” Mr Collins said. “The reality is if you’re trespassing in the rail corridor, you won’t hear a train coming.”
This article first appeared on www.dailytelegraph.com.au
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