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Rise in weapons offences on public transport

Violent offenders continue to menace commuters on Adelaide’s public transport network, as figures reveal weapons offences and assaults have again risen under Labor.

“The Weatherill Labor Government has completely failed to provide a safe public transport network for passengers and workers, with an alarming 50 per cent jump in weapons offences in 2016,” said Shadow Minister for Transport David Pisoni.

“South Australians would be deeply concerned about the increased number of arrests of offenders carrying weapons on trains, trams and buses.

“There was a sharp rise from 50 weapons offences in 2015 to 75 weapons offences in 2016, leaving Labor’s promise to deliver a safer public transport system in tatters.

The State Liberals obtained the Public Safety Transport Branch data through Freedom of Information (FoI). It shows there were 1088 arrests in 2016, up by 114 on the previous year.

“Illicit drug offences on public transport also increased by a staggering 65 per cent in 2016, which is hardly going to encourage decent, law-abiding commuters onto the network.

“We want passengers and drivers to feel safe on a reliable, clean public transport network – under Labor, it’s just not happening.

“The figures make for disturbing reading with 149 ‘acts intended to cause injury’ in 2016, compared with 94 of those offences in the previous year.

“Sexual assaults and related offences on public transport have escalated each year from just three in 2014, to six in 2015, and 11 in 2016 – which is totally unacceptable.

“This time last year, the Government defended the escalating offending by saying more arrests showed a ‘safer and more secure transport network’.

“I don’t think anybody would claim that an increase in the detection of drug drivers means our roads are safer — no amount of spin can hide the Government’s failure to deliver a safe public transport network.”