Fear of crime on the rail networks: Perceptions of the UK public and British Transport Police

Power, Nicola, Mcmanus, Michelle Ann orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-0095-1071, Lynch, Rosa and Bonworth, James (2016) Fear of crime on the rail networks: Perceptions of the UK public and British Transport Police. Crime Prevention and Community Safety, 18 (2). pp. 91-104. ISSN 1460-3780

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1057/cpcs.2016.2


Counter-terrorism on the rail network is vital to the security of the United Kingdom. The British Transport Police (BTP) employ covert and overt security measures to prevent crime, which includes: closed circuit television, armed police, unarmed polisce, police community support officers, police dogs, stops and searches and awareness campaigns. All security measures aim to deter crime while importantly reassuring the public. We surveyed both members of the public and BTP officers about the perceived effectiveness of current security measures, specifically with regards to fear of terrorism. Feelings of reassurance and the perceived effectiveness of security measures were positively related. The most effective and reassuring security measure was the use of armed police; whereas the least effective and reassuring was the use of awareness campaigns. However, interestingly, qualitative analyses suggested that an increase in armed police without informed awareness campaigns would have a negative impact on public reassurance by increasing fear.

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