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Armed police to patrol UK's trains for the first time in history

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From Thursday, British Transport Police (BTP) will be patrolling on trains across the UK after the Manchester suicide bombings.

This is the first time in history that specialised firearms officers have ever patrolled trains, although armed officers have been patrolling London Underground since December.

BTP said that passengers will see armed police on the trains as the UK remains on high alert.

Chief Constable Paul Crowther from British Transport Police, said: “Since the devastating events in Manchester on Monday evening, our force has radically increased the presence of our officers nationwide.

“By having firearms officers on board trains we’re ensuring that trains remain as safe as possible for passengers. Our patrols will be highly visible and passengers should feel comforted by their presence. Please do speak to them if you have any concerns at all.

“This is part of our national mobilisation plan to deal with the current and ongoing threat. It is important to note that we do not have any specific intelligence in relation to train services but are taking this action to ensure we can protect and reassure the public.”

Since the UK Government enacted Operation Temperer, BTP has also benefitted from additional firearms officers from the Ministry of Defence Police, who will remain at stations in London.

Crowther added: “I want to take this opportunity to remind everyone to stay calm, be vigilant, and if you spot anything at all which gives you cause for concern, let us know. In light of the dreadful events over these last few days, and the increase to the national threat level, nothing should be considered too trivial to report and any information – regardless of whether you feel it is significant or not – may be important to all of us.

“The cowardly acts of terrorists will never weaken our resolve. We will continue to work with police forces nationally to ensure that the travelling public remain safe and reassured.” 

Suspicious behaviour

He added: “We would also like you to stop our officers and tell us if you see anything suspicious.”

“We want you to look out for the unusual activity or behaviour that strikes you as not quite right and out of place. You may feel it’s nothing but trust your instincts and report it; our intelligence specialists will be able to assess whether the information you have is important or not.”

If you see or hear anything that could be a threat of any kind you can contact the anti-terrorism hotline on 0800 789 321 or BTP on 0800 40 50 40.




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