HELP us catch the bus stop vandals – that’s the plea from Nottinghamshire County Council which is spending up to £50,000 each year on repairing damaged bus shelters.
The council maintains 1,407 shelters across the county but is constantly having to repair them due to vandalism – and the occasional road traffic accident.
This year, for the first time, there have been two successful prosecutions for vandalism, with one resulting in a full damages claim against those responsible.
Now the County Council is hoping to curb the amount of vandalism so that the money spent on repairs can be more usefully spent elsewhere.
“So far this financial year we’ve spent £25,000 on repair works due to vandalism and RTAs,” says Coun Richard Jackson, the county council’s cabinet member for transport and highways.
“That’s a conservative figure, however, because we have people out there all the time doing routine cleaning work and so on. Whilst there they often manage to pull in minor repair work, so the true figure is probably nearer £50,000.
“When you think that a new shelter costs around £2,000 to install that’s 20 bus shelters which we could be putting in around the county to benefit local people.”
Over the last 12 months there have been 414 incidents of bus shelter vandalism. In addition, 100 shelters were so badly affected by graffiti that parts had to be replaced.
Most of the County Council’s bus shelters are of the modern type and made from Perspex which is tougher than glass. Even so, a single cracked or broken Perspex panel costs around £30 to replace.
“For the first time ever this year we’ve had people caught in the act of vandalising shelters and compensation has been part of their sentence,” added Coun Jackson.
“I would urge anyone witnessing a shelter being vandalised to call the police immediately.”