05 DEC 2018

Children 'surfing' on Deal trains are risking their lives

Children are putting their lives at risk by "surfing" on trains departing from Deal station, staff have warned me. Station manager Kyle Miller said that anti-social behaviour was an increasing issue on the platform.

He said that the problem has recently escalated with teenagers "surfing" on trains on Saturday, November 17, and Sunday, November 18. The "surfing" involves the children grabbing on to the side of the carriages and holding on as the train starts moving. Mr Miller said the train drivers put the brakes on as soon as they spot the youngsters. As a result, delays are caused for passengers on board and further down the line.

This behaviour is incredibly dangerous and needs to stop now. These youngsters are putting their lives at risk. Staff are becoming increasingly worried about anti-social behaviour on the platform. British Transport Police need to increase their presence at Deal station and put a stop to it.

The surfing issue was revealed during a meeting Charlie organised with Southeastern to discuss sprucing up Deal station. I am backing the Deal Station Clean-up Crew, who he joined for a litter pick in October. He called for Southeastern and Network rail to get the station back on track.

Southeastern listened to residents' concerns and put in new bins in recent weeks – but the protective plastic covering has already been smashed. The responsibility for sprucing up the station's metal bridge and rusting signs lies with Network Rail. I am raising the issue with them once again, while also urging British Transport Police to tackle reports of anti-social behaviour.

Deal deserves better than this. We need a spruced-up station which residents can be proud of – and to crack down on anti-social behaviour.


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Charlie Elphicke

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