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Conductor nearly tossed from moving train

TT/The Local · 16 Sep 2011, 11:54

Published: 16 Sep 2011 11:54 GMT+02:00

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A man travelling on a train between Kristianstad and Bromölla in Southern Sweden, tried to throw the conductor off the train as he was caught without a ticket.

The aggravated man was travelling in the company of a woman on a train between Kristianstad and Bromölla when a female conductor asked to see his ticket around 12:40am Thursday morning.

Unable to produce a ticket, the man then became aggressive, putting the conductor in a choke hold.

He then managed to work the door open at which point he allegedly tried to toss her from the train, which was travelling at about 70 kilometres per hour at the time of the incident.

While the man’s attempt to throw the conductor off the train failed, and he and his companion managed to escape from the train, the incident angered union officials.

“This was the last straw,” said Jonas Pincini, club president at the Service and Communications Union for the Öresundstågen train line, to the local Sydsvenskan newspaper.

“This is about a colleague who could have died."

The conductor was later brought to hospital, where she was doing fine considering the circumstances, Anneli Evers, spokesperson for rail operator DSB First, told Sydsvenskan.

Support groups of different kinds are now assisting affected personnel, and the two conductors on board the train, as well as the driver, were taken out of service.

The assault was reported to police, and on Thursday evening the man was arrested in his home on suspicion of aggrivated assault, Christer Nilsson at Kristiansstad police told local newspaper Helsingborgs Dagblad.

In the wake of the incident, both the union and the safety representatives have met with officials from DSB First to discuss workplace safety issues.

According to Jonas Gadd, a safety officer with DSB First, the company presented seven different measures, only two of which were even considered.

“We’ve really not agreed on anything so far,” Gadd told Sydsvenskan, “and that’s why we now have put in a safety stop (skyddsstopp) effective immediately."

Story continues below…

The safety stop means that until a decision is made, the conductors will no longer be checking tickets on the trains of Öresundstågen.

The decision is now being investigated by Swedish Work Environment Authority (Arbetsmiljöverket).

“We’re taking this incident very seriously,” said Anneli Evers, spokesperson for DSB First.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

13:48 September 16, 2011 by Bigd
Shocking story!

One positive thing:

Free travel to Copenhagen for me tonight! ;)
14:16 September 16, 2011 by Nilspet
Good that she was fine after the incident but one has to listen to both parties before drawing a final conclusion. Any physical assault is bad but sometimes you can meet very aggressive conductors who launch psychological assaults. Such employees should have been taken off from work.

In my opinion the train company should instruct their staff to be more friendly to passengers no matter what type (those with or without tickets). If you want people to collaborate (i.e. pay in this case) you have to give them a friendly smile instead of threatening words (e.g. you will be thrown off the train at the next station if you do not pay). This will also prevent staff from being harmed ...

what are your opinions?
14:34 September 16, 2011 by prince T
The conductors should have self defence training and panic button on them. . I think the passenger must have mental problem. He wants to take a life because of some few 100kr.
15:29 September 16, 2011 by Tanskalainen
Scottish tourist?
15:32 September 16, 2011 by Svensksmith
Give the conductors Tasers.
15:52 September 16, 2011 by Borilla

Don't be ridiculous. No ticket. No ride. What justifies actions like this? If you have a ticket, things like this don't happen. Actually, the story is clearly fiction. An SJ train moving, especially at 70 kph? Never.
16:28 September 16, 2011 by Migga
@ Nilspet

My opinion? My opinion is that you are crazy.

Why do you protect the criminal? Why do you attack and question the conductor? Why do you try to justify the mans action?

You are right about the fact that one should hear both sides of a story but what could he possibly say to make his actions acceptable? Nothing. The woman was taken to the hospital for christ sake. She could have been killed and the police is now looking into it. Seems very clear to me. And even if the conductor "threatend" him it doesn`t make it acceptable.
16:42 September 16, 2011 by johnoleson
Now we have a dilemma. Do we maintain the Swedish principle of allowing women in jobs of authority or do we maintain the Swedish principle of being sensitive to other cultures that might be offended by a woman exercising authority over a man?
16:50 September 16, 2011 by jostein
Best thing is probably for conductors to just ignore settlers when asking for tickets. They do not have support from their own company and they risk getting injured. Its not worth it, just let them ride the train for free.
18:16 September 16, 2011 by Svensksmith
Yes, the train rides should be free. In fact, make everything free. Food, houses, TVs, cars, etc. Why work?
19:07 September 16, 2011 by Tysknaden
"A man... The man... He..." This is the description given to us. By The Local. What does this tell us about this nutcase? - Exactly.
19:13 September 16, 2011 by Nilspet
My point was not that it was right to launch an assault. If you read carefully enough you would understand the thing I really meant. To me it could not have been possible (unless the man was mentally sick) that he just tried to throw the conductor out of the train when she showed up to inspect the ticket. There must have been some argument or some sort of conversation that turn him mad.

What I was trying to say is that ... the train conductor should be instructed to just ignore the passengers that show the sign of aggression or drunk passenger. There is no point for any train conductor to try to physically force someone (a freerider for example) out off the train even if they refuse. It is better to report it to the police. I have myself seen conductors trying to act like police and therefore I suspect that there must have been some incident that led this man to act like a criminal.

Again I never said that it was OK to attack someone be it on the moving train or on the bed.
19:24 September 16, 2011 by Addendum
Thank god she's okay (as okay as one can be after such an attack)...

According to comments on Swedish sites, the conductors get some level of crap all the time from an ever increasing number of people who "forgot" their tickets and "forgot" their wallets. Guess it will ultimately depend on what it's worth to the train companies regarding enforcement. Probably though, as usual, we who pay will have to pay more... pay for a security person to be on the train... pay for additional conductors to check tickets upon boarding... Instead of a more honor-system approach, we'll get to pay for babysitters.
19:59 September 16, 2011 by BillyB
why was he only arrested for aggravated assault????

trying to throw someone off a train moving at 70kph should be attempted murder surely??

If the punishments fit the actions then maybe people might think twice about being such idiots in future
20:21 September 16, 2011 by abb8
The simple solution would be to have ticket barriers like in the UK and many other countries. People would not physically be able to get on the platform to catch the train without a ticket.
00:37 September 17, 2011 by aveminus
@abb8: If you happen to stay in Stockholm you would know that ticket barriers dont work fine :) I mostly see people jumping the gate or squeezing in with some1 with ticket and the gate keeper doesnt seem to be concerned :)

I wonder how did this guy manage to open a moving train door :|
00:40 September 17, 2011 by t64
The people of Sweden are living in a dream world. In the USA we have what are called minorities. Here on the west coast, the commuter trains have police officers as conductors. Without this kind of authority people wouldn't ride. Just last month the news headlines stated "teen shot for lack of $2 fair". In reality, the 19 year old tried to run away to avoid the citation and when chased took out a gun and shot at the officers and got shot in the process. As Sweden becomes more multicultural, it will require a stronger hand at rule enforcement.

@jostein #9 If we just let minorities ride for free, they would prey on the other passengers and soon very few would ride the trains.
03:16 September 17, 2011 by marshins
I am a conductor on V-Line, Melbourne, Australia.

We are no longer allowed to remove drunk, unruly, verbally abusive, fare evaders anymore unless the train is held and the police attend.

Just walk away from the ferrals now.

The connies working for this company are lucky having 2 on each service. We run a train with 7 cars seating just over 500, there is still only 1 connie on the train.
05:20 September 17, 2011 by Grokh
why didnt people react and threw him out of the train instead :o
09:21 September 17, 2011 by hogar2010
I don't understand what has Öresundstågen with incident between Kristianstad and Bromölla? I don't have any complain about tickets in Sweden, it is good that peiople can huy in train for the same price as at station, I don't like only misusing of Oresunds bridge between Malmo and Copenhagen (misusing by DSB) to make higher prices for ticket and if you want to buy ticket in train, as anywhere else in Sweden, they take 100DKK more from you, ticket is 200 instead of 100 DKK, bus 999 is only 70-80DKK. So, from Malmo begin Danish conducters and they have different rules than Swedish conducters, Danish take 100DKK more from you if you want to buy ticket in train, so, I am not surprised if someone attack them one day. Malmo is Swedish territory and many tourists have no information that between Malmo and Copenhagen they can't buy ticket in the train for the same price as at station.
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