'Shocking' video of teens playing on train tracks in Southampton released

BTP issued CCTV footage and said youths are lucky to be alive

'Shocking' video of teens playing on train tracks in Southampton released

A "shocking" video showing youths playing on the train tracks at a Hampshire railway station has emerged.

British Transport Police (BTP) are issuing a reminder to the public of the dangers of trespassing on the railway, and released CCTV footage from the station, showing one of the youths appearing to lie across the tracks with his head resting on the third rail.

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Officers say they could easily have been killed and the only reason they aren't injured, or worse, is because the power was switched off for overnight engineering works.

Officers want to speak to the two individuals in the video and are appealing for the public's assistance in tracing them.

'Shocking' video of teens playing on train tracks in Southampton released

The incident took place at Woolston station in Southampton between 4am and 6am on Sunday, 2 August.

Sergeant Alisar Kennerley said: "This was a truly shocking incident in which one of these individuals could easily have been killed or seriously injured. They seem totally oblivious to the risks as they play on the line, with one of them even resting his head on the third rail which is normally electrified.

"Luckily for them, all power was switched off due to overnight engineering works. However, there would have been no way of them knowing this, making their behaviour even more concerning. Also, diesel trains involved in the works were running, with one passing through the station shortly before these individuals decided to venture onto the tracks. If the power had been on, I have no doubt we would be dealing with a fatality."

'Shocking' video of teens playing on train tracks in Southampton released

Sharon Vye-Parminter, Safety & Assurance Director for the Network Rail-South West Trains alliance said: "The railway in the south east of England uses a high-voltage third rail to power the trains. It looks just like a normal rail, but it's electrified and has 750 volts passing through it. Thankfully at the time of this incident the power supply was turned off due to maintenance work, but there was no way those involved could have known this. Nothing more than luck kept these people from being seriously injured or even killed.

"Thankfully the number of people killed or hurt on the railways is coming down but every death or injury is preventable. Our community safety teams work tirelessly with young people across Britain to warn them of the dangers and encourage them to get involved in safer and more positive activities. Even though the majority of trespassers aren't hurt, these crimes are not harmless and can result in huge delays and costs."

The appeal comes 11 days after three men were injured when they received electric shocks on the line at nearby Totton railway station.

Officers are now appealing for the public's assistance in tracing the two people from the Woolston CCTV video.

'Shocking' video of teens playing on train tracks in Southampton released

Sgt Kennerley added: "They may have cheated death but now we want to talk to them about their reckless behaviour. I am appealing directly to these individuals to come forward to police. I am also appealing to anyone who recognises them to get in touch.

"Our message to the public is clear; stay off the tracks. The railway line is a dangerous environment with passing trains and electrified rails presenting real dangers."

Anyone with information is asked to contact British Transport Police on 0800 40 50 40, or text 61016, quoting reference S/B6 of 26/08/2014. Information can also be passed anonymously to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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