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Bus vandalism could lead to a halt of services in the Great Yarmouth area

Bus services could be suspended in Great Yarmouth  Picture: James Bass

Bus services could be suspended in Great Yarmouth Picture: James Bass

(C) Archant Norfolk 2013

Bus services in Great Yarmouth could be suspended after vandals have repeatedly smashed windows on its fleet of buses by throwing objects at them - causing thousands of pounds of damage.

First Eastern Counties says if the problem persists it will consider withdrawing buses until the problem is solved.

The latest incident happened on Sunday night to buses in the Regent Road area which had left Market Gates bus stop, with windows of the vehicles being smashed, causing £800 of damage.

Reacting to the latest attack, Chris Speed, head of operations for First Eastern Counties, said: “We had an incident on Sunday evening by one of our drivers who was travelling from the Market Gates Bus Station towards Caister.

“The driver heard a thud, resulting in a window being smashed by an object that had been thrown at the bus.

“The driver stopped the vehicle and asked customers if anyone had incurred any injuries, fortunately everyone was OK.

“Not long after this we had a second incident the same as the first one.

“This is a mindless act and one that we have been experiencing for some time across our bus network in the Great Yarmouth area.

“The safety and wellbeing of our customers and staff is paramount and we will do everything we can to assist the police in finding and prosecuting anyone that is involved in this criminal activity.

“It is also a matter of cost to us as a business, Sunday night’s incidents will amount to around £800 to replace the windows with safety glass and fitting, over the last few weeks the sum has escalated into the thousands as we have had many windows broken.

“In circumstances involving persistent criminal damage to our buses and an increased threat to the safety of our staff and customers, we would review the situation and could involve the withdrawal of a service to an area temporarily, until the problem is resolved.”

Norfolk Police and Crime Commissioner Lorne Green said he will raise the issue when he meets with the head of Yarmouth police Supt Roger Wiltshire and added: “The community must be safe and feel safe.”

The police are investigating the latest incidents and have asked witnesses or anyone with information to call police on 101.

17 comments

  • If this is true from b driver , it just shows how bad things have got , I travel on the buses a lot but not in the evening and can say I have never encountered this sort of thing ,but who in their right mind wants to use the buses and be in the town centre after six pm . Maybe Mr plant would like to comment on this as it has to be something he should have been aware of ,or has he also been kept in the dark ,as surely the leader of our local council would never have made the statement re crime he did recently. And can I ask as to why this has not been high lighted in the local press ?

    Report this comment

    Muddy

    Saturday, February 11, 2017

  • The police have proven they are powerless to stop this behavior. While this issue has only just hit social media, this is an ongoing problem which has been going on for many months, it all began around October i do believe (just ask any bus driver). A Sanders coach had it's windows smashed before Christmas and nothing changed. While the anti social behavior has decreased slightly this past month, i know for a fact that Norfolk Police have received numerous calls (on a nearly nightly basis in the lead up to Christmas) about these problems. The broken windows are just the tip of the iceberg! How about the driverpassenger intimidation? Playing chicken with the buses forcing them to brake potentially injuring the passengers or killing the fool on his bike? Opening the emergency exits while the buses are in motion? (passengers sit there and could easily fall out). A bus driver being mugged at a cash point by teenagers fitting the same demographic? The list goes on and Norfolk police are fully aware of everything that has been happening over the past 6 months. So before you blame the bus companies, please understand that the option of stopping services through market gates is the last resort. The police need to take action, the buses have hours of CCTV footage on them, there is even monitored (supposedly) CCTV at the bus station. There is plenty of evidence available if the police actually "choose" to do something. I guess it's all a question of resources or should i say the lack of resources. Is it going to take the death or serious injury of one of these teenagers for something to happen? I pity the poor bus driver who is unfortunate enough to be driving the bus when this happens, no doubt he will be blamed and vilified for this. How can anyone expect the bus driver to be responsible for the safety and well being of his passengers when this type of behavior is common place? A very close friend of mine is a bus driver and i am shocked by the lack of interest Norfolk Police have shown over the past 6 months.

    Report this comment

    B Driver

    Saturday, February 11, 2017

  • http:www.ourwatch.org.ukuploadsgeneralStreet_Patrols_Briefing_Paper_27_March_2008.pdf This was what i`m talking about guys...

    Report this comment

    Alan Sowle

    Friday, February 10, 2017

  • wish we could group together,sort out own patrols in hi viz jackets and body cameras. let the public know that the people care for the people. Just watch and report back what we see. It works in USA........

    Report this comment

    Alan Sowle

    Friday, February 10, 2017

  • Gybc seems so cost with the holiday camps they probably don't care how the town affects other tourist businesses. Residents are trapped into paying council tax, the voting system means we can never get rid of all the councillors who have let this problem fester. Other seaside towns have grasped the nettle of too many HMO etc but not Yarmouth. The bus vandalism smacks of young teenagers or the troubled. The bus stops featured serve the whole borough, 90,000 or so people. It is absurd that First should consider withdrawing services. Yarmouth police are holding talks to tick us off for not evacuating when told there might be flooding . Those few days we saw more police in town than for a whole year put together.

    Report this comment

    FlintinChalk

    Friday, February 10, 2017

  • Just the other day graham plant used the pages of this paper to round on Jonathan childs who had merely made representations about local concerns regarding crime in Yarmouth. Some councillors actually try to do a bit of good but our mayor shrugged off the reality, which is that no matter what po!Ice crime figures say those who pay council tax to Yarmouth know the town feels much less safe. The police are busy with a succession of drug raids but the rest of us are dealing with the crimes and behaviour associated with addiction and poverty . We all know former offenders are relocated to the town, we all know housing benefit recipients are relocated to the town or move on their own accord and we all know there has been a gradual flight of working people from the town to the suburban villages. So is policing reflecting the cha bed demographic? Plant should realise how the town deters holiday makers from returning and drives local money to Norwich.

    Report this comment

    FlintinChalk

    Friday, February 10, 2017

  • Simple answer...stop buses going into Yarmouth, close the doors, open the bridge leave it open and switch the light off...

    Report this comment

    SisterBluebird

    Thursday, February 9, 2017

  • To all us posters we must realise that council leader Mr Plant said earlier this week that GY does not have a crime problem... Like I said before maybe he should still reconsider his postion... People in a local high position that fail to except reality and seek to avoid it, shows their true attitude to solving local issues as and when they occur ... Shameful..

    Report this comment

    Lionel

    Thursday, February 9, 2017

  • So this has happen twice in one full week....!!!! madness and shocked.... and least we have two new police dogs now......

    Report this comment

    Alan Sowle

    Thursday, February 9, 2017

  • And what do you think dibble will do then ? It is far too much effort to actually deal with the criminals when there are richer pickings nicking tax payers driving to work who are over the speed limit.

    Report this comment

    getinthezodiac

    Thursday, February 9, 2017

  • Is anyone surprised by this. The days when Great Yarmouth was a decent place to be are long gone. It is now just another sprawling sink estate of chavs who are happy to drag the town further into the mire.

    Report this comment

    getinthezodiac

    Thursday, February 9, 2017

  • I agree that this is a crime problem and not the responsibility of the bus company but reality tells me that there are so many buses and the vandals strike such a very small minority of those buses that putting police on the buses is simply not realistic. Also by the time that the bus has stopped after being attacked and the doors opened for any police to get off the criminals would be well gone. If the criminals always strike in the same place or at the same time a bit of surveillance might be more realistic.

    Report this comment

    Sleepboot

    Thursday, February 9, 2017

  • I'm sorry but it is not the bus companies job to police vandalism at the buses ,this needs and should be a policing job , but sadly the police are trimmed to the bone and we are lucky to see a police car let alone police on foot maintaining some degree of safety and reassurance ,but hey ho our beloved council leader does not think we have a crime problem in great Yarmouth , see item re county councillor asking police commissioner about crime wave in town !!!

    Report this comment

    Muddy

    Thursday, February 9, 2017

  • Perhaps adapting some of the small windscreen cams that many cars and trucks have on their dashboards might be a good idea. Won't stop rocks through windows, but hopefully would get a good picture of the culprits.

    Report this comment

    manbythesea

    Thursday, February 9, 2017

  • I would think that common sense would tell the police to put a couple of plain clothed policemen and women on the buses to see if this would help to catch the stupid idiots doing this or the bus company for a period of time adds extra concealed camera's to the bus sides facing outwards to try and catch them on camera.

    Report this comment

    Spooky

    Thursday, February 9, 2017

  • Q How will the problem be solved by withdrawing buses? A. As far as the bus company is concerned they owe a duty of care to the drivers & passengers and this might be considered to make that impossible to fulfil. If someone got injured this could suddenly be very important. It is the usual story of a few idiots causing problems fro everyone else. If they got caught - which is unlikely unless they are very stupid or drunk - they would just be told not to do it again.

    Report this comment

    Sleepboot

    Thursday, February 9, 2017

  • How will the problem be solved if buses are withdrawn? Solving the problem would have to involve catching and punishing the culprits. If there are no buses to aim at they may well target some other vehicles.

    Report this comment

    POGAl

    Thursday, February 9, 2017

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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