Climbdown over train ‘terror’ pics threat
July 12, 2010
A rail firm has been forced into an embarrassing climbdown – and to make an apology – after a passenger was told he faced arrest under anti-terror laws for taking pictures on a train.
Nigel Roberts, 41, had taken photographs with his mobile phone on a Weymouth to London train to highlight what he saw as overcrowding and potential danger caused by heavy luggage in the aisles.
Roberts claimed that, in an emergency, passengers would not have been able to get out of the train and he raised his concerns with a ticket inspector, showing him the pictures he had taken.
However, the inspector said Roberts risked being arrested under anti-terrorism legislation and threatened to call police.
The guard told Roberts that, under the Terrorism Act, he was not allowed to take pictures on any trains.
?But this is not the case,? a South West Trains spokeswoman told Amateur Photographer.
?This was clearly a misunderstanding. These pictures were not a threat to the public. As far as we are concerned, people can take pictures on our trains.?
South West Trains admitted that the train had been crowded with people, who had been on a cruise, returning from Southampton.
The spokeswoman said the train company has now issued a written apology to Roberts.