Armed guards to board French trains
Mon, 04/04/2016 – 11:00
Some 3,000 armed guards in plain clothes will board France’s trains as part of a new security initiative. Copyright David McKelvey.
Following the terror attacks in Brussels, the SNCF is placing thousands of armed guards on France’s trains. Security will be upped considerably thanks to a reported 400 million euro injection into the budget, which will also centralise surveillance of the network’s CCTV cameras across the country.
President of the SNCF Guillaume Pépy has announced that the company’s security budget will be increased by 50% to allow for as many as 3,000 armed guards in civilian dress to board France’s rail network.
According to reports, the revised budget will also permit the SNCF to create a central surveillance centre for its 40,000 CCTV cameras, many of which are found in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region.
Le Figaro has reported that an additional 30 sniffer dogs will join the SNCF’s security ranks in major stations, allowing the network to increase search operations of baggage.
The newspaper states that, according to Pépy, security gates will be installed in 15 of the country’s busiest train hubs. He hopes that ongoing discussions to improve security checks on trains entering France between the French government and those of Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands will lead to an improvement in safety for passengers. “We all should be able to board a train knowing we are safe,” said Pépy.