London and Kent pilot 'people at risk' railway phone app

Rail 505 Image copyright RAIL 505
Image caption A screenshot from a Rail 505 advert for the new service

A phone app has been launched for train passengers to report people who they think might be at risk near the railway.

Rail505.com is being piloted in parts of London and Kent covered by rail firm Southeastern, Network Rail said.

After the pilot, Network Rail will review the system and look at whether it could be rolled out across the UK.

Programme manager Ian Stevens said: "Passengers are the eyes and ears of the railway."

He said people were encouraged to speak to staff if they saw something they felt worried about, but could use the app if that was not possible.

Mr Stevens added: "It could be that someone has been sitting on a platform for a long time, appears distressed or looks to be too close to the tracks. As soon as we receive a report, help will be sent to the person to find out more."

Image copyright PA
Image caption The app is being piloted in parts of London and Kent covered by Southeastern

British Transport Police Inspector Pippa Smith said the app would help people to be more aware of fellow passengers and take action if they had concerns.

She said: "By using the app the right help at the right time can be given to someone who might be at risk."

All reports received through the app will be kept confidential and people using it do not have to register or leave contact details.

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