Deutsche Bahn staff to start wearing body cameras after rise in attacks
Deutsche Bahn, the largest operator of regional transport and long-distance trains in Germany, has announced that its staff will start to routinely wear body cameras, after last year saw a steep rise in the number of assaults against workers.
More cameras on German trains and in stations
All Deutsche Bahn employees are to be equipped with body cameras to better protect them, the international company announced over the weekend. The policy was initially trialled in southwestern Germany and will be rolled out nationwide after both train staff and passengers said that they felt “safer”, DB’s head of security, Hans-Hilmar Rischke, told Tagesschau.
That’s not the only investment the company says it is making into the safety of staff and passengers. Deutsche Bahn also plans to install thousands more security cameras at stations across Germany - there are currently 9.000, but bosses want to increase that to 11.000 by the end of 2024. That’s on top of the 50.000 cameras already installed in the interiors of trains in Germany. Employees with jobs that put them into contact with the public are also set to receive training sessions.
Attacks on Deutsche Bahn employees rise during COVID pandemic
Deutsche Bahn said that attacks on employees increased 21 percent in 2022, to 3.138 cases. However, passenger numbers were of course down in 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic, and many incidents in 2022 were down to COVID-related restrictions. Deutsche Bahn did not say how the figures compared to 2019, before the pandemic.
30 percent of all cases involved employees enforcing the mask requirement, which was only lifted nationwide in February. Another 7 percent of incidents were related to the 9-euro ticket, which resulted in super-packed trains on some routes in Germany over the summer.
According to the statistics, half of the incidents involved personnel working on regional trains, while a third involved DB security forces. Other workers including bus drivers, cleaners and service staff were also the victims of abuse. 6 percent of cases involved “serious bodily harm”.
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