Vandalism on train tracks is a seemingly endless issue, with the cost of removing graffiti increasing year after year. Not only is this costing Australian taxpayers millions annually, it is a dangerous act that must be discouraged.
In light of the seriousness of this problem, the NSW government has employed modern security solutions across Sydney's train network.
Graffiti becoming an increasingly expensive issue
Vandalism of public and private property is an expensive and global problem. While graffiti can be a valid art form, it rarely is when painted on train tracks.
According to the NSW government, removing graffiti from the Sydney trains network cost $34 million in 2014 - a $30 million increase from the previous year.
"We know customers feel unsafe when they are using a train which is covered in graffiti, and offenders often place themselves and others in danger by trespassing on the railway or being somewhere they shouldn't," explained Sydney Trains' Chief Executive Howard Collins.
NSW Minister for Transport and Infrastructure Andrew Constance added that the state will continue to crack down on offenders in a bid to boost the rail network.
"I am determined to reduce the amount of graffiti vandalism on our train network and making trains a more attractive option for customers," he said.
Vandals on train tracks are not only causing damage to public property but risking their lives in the process. Train tracks are dangerous, and these acts are a safety hazard in themselves, as well as setting a poor example for younger children.
True to his world, Mr Constance has installed an effective solution to reducing the frequency of graffiti.
Modern security solutions deployed
New technology installed at select Sydney train stations uses motion-activated video alarm systems to catch anyone attempting to access the premises illegally. Once this video security has been activated, the staff monitoring the footage are able to determine if there is a crime in progress and take appropriate action.
As operators can view the scene immediately, the police can be dispatched only when needs be, rather than as soon as the alarm is triggered. Not only does this eliminate false alarms but it helps alleviate the demand on police forces.
"This can be deployed anywhere, at any time. The simple message is - don't break the law or you'll be tracked down," stated Mr Constance.
Video alarm systems are increasingly becoming more sophisticated in preventing vandalism. If you are concerned about your business premises, contact NSR for advice on the best way to secure your property.