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May 3, 2010 | by  | in News |
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Tranz Metro Passenger Safety Concerns

Police ask for reports

Tranz Metro’s safety policies are being questioned by a Victoria University student after a man exposed himself to passengers on the Upper Hutt service.

The 18-year-old female says once she realised the man was exposing himself, she informed a Tranz Metro staff member, who appeared unconcerned.

“The train started to slow down and I told her there was a man near me with his pants down touching his penis. As I left, she asked me if he was off the train. When I said he’s just gone, she closed the train doors and moved on.

“I felt like Tranz Metro didn’t care. Here I was, explaining there was a man on her train touching himself, and she just leaves me at the station with him?”

Kiwirail General Manager of Public Affairs Kevin Ramshaw explained that as the offender had left Taita Station, it was a police matter.

“Our Security Manager has been made aware of this incident and is now working with police. The ticket collector was placed in a difficult position as the train needed to move on.

The man was no longer at the station and wasn’t an immediate threat to the student.”

Ramshaw was unsure whether the ticket collector had later reported the incident.

“We encourage staff to intervene if there is an immediate danger to passengers, but for staff safety, they shouldn’t intervene if there isn’t a threat to travellers.”

Kiwirail Marketing Communications Manager Nigel Parry stated this type of incident was extremely rare and Tranz Metro is treating it seriously.

“It is not possible to write a specific procedure for every circumstance. However, our general procedures involve taking matters seriously and using a common sense approach to any situation.”

With the attempted rape of a female student at Pomare Station several weeks ago, Constable Baz Murfin of the Wellington Community Engagement team did not believe the conductors acted accordingly.

“It’s important for people to be forceful when asking for help. This student asked for help and didn’t get the correct response. People need to know it’s okay to be loud and vocal about what you need. Once other passengers realise what is happening, the offender could be apprehended much quicker.”

People are advised to profile the offender to increase the chances of an arrest.

“We try to encourage people to map out what the offender looks like, including scars, a tattoo, and any kind of marking that identifies them. Certainly our primary concern is your safety, but with a good description, it is much easier to catch them on CCTV footage. If at all possible, try taking a picture on a cellphone.”

Murfin emphasised students in this situation should contact police as soon as possible.

“We understand that it can be embarrassing for people who witness this kind of inappropriate behaviour, but we encourage them to come forth. Police will listen and are interested in these kinds of cases. They’re far from being insignificant.”

Students with any information or who wish to report an offence are encouraged to contact Murfin:

Constable Baz Murfin, Wellington Community Engagement team
Phone: (04) 381 2001
Email: Barry.Murfin@police.govt.nz

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  1. this is nor a complaint but more of an ask or maybe just an awareness to whom this may concern, i am a security officer for tranzmetro on a friday and saturday night and whilst im on duty on the trains as we stop at stations to do pick-ups and drop-offs i notice at how little attention is being made on the abuse our stations get, such as smashed windows in waiting areas on the platforms and alot of tagging aswell it really annoys me at how groups of people or individuals can disrespect such a well respected public transport network such as tranzmetro by tagging smashing windows and tagging our trains it is such a bad look when wealthy businessman tourist and other well respected and well mannered general public have to see such a disrespect to our society it is such a bad look aswell for the region and our nation so is there any reason why tranzmetro management can’t organise an effective solution to an ever going problem or how about fixing the broken windows painting the disrespectful tagging that loots our railwaystations just to make things more comfortable for not only our passengers but for us train staff aswell. i know that it will come at a expensive cost to put this prevention in place so would you rather the good compliments from our passengers or is the money a better feeling if i was the one to organise the fixings i would be doing my very best to prevent our stations being abused.

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