Graffiti has become synonymous with the mass transport industry. From its roots on the Subway’s of New York, to the techniques we see around us today, the battle between train operating companies and graffiti artists is an ever evolving struggle. “Etching” is a technique developed by graffiti artists that, due to its quick administration and long lasting effects, can be seen around us on a daily basis. It involves using an abrasive tool or acid to scratch in an artist’s tag to a surface, often glass in the case of public transport.

British Transport Police
etch grafGraffiti in public places can make passengers feel unsafe and, if not dealt with quickly, can lead to furtherundesirable activity taking place. It can also create a climate of fear for those using and working on the railway.

Network Rail estimate that it costs at least £5million per year to clean up graffiti, not including the loss of revenue or delays caused to the service. Dealing with graffiti also diverts valuable police and staff resources. Hundreds of thousands of staff hours are taken up in cleaning, repairs and police time.

The British Transport police (BTP) have a suggested policy to train companies that they do not operate graffitied carriages and therefore do not provide a mobile advertising hoarding for the so-called artists. Therefore, operating companies have to make a choice, go against BTP policy or cancel trains and inconvenience passengers and a potential penalty from the Department of Transport.

South West trains

South West Trains are the largest Train Operating Company in the UK, serving a mixture of commuters and leisure travellers, operating over 1,600 trains a day. Operating such a vast fleet exposes south West Trains to high levels of graffiti.

Replacing an etched window is expensive. The cost of materials, man hours and loss of revenue from time spent off the track amounts to thousands of pounds per window.

The Revitaglaze way

At Revitaglaze, our experience in the public transport sector has enabled us to develop a service offering that meetsthe specific needs of our clients. By repairing and not replacing, we are able to offer a cost effective solution to graffiti. Our system of polishing to opaque and applying a sacrificial layer of security film, compliant to the highest fire and safety standards, can be carried out in the depot without the need to remove the train from operation at a fraction of the cost of window replacement. As approved applicators of the industry’s leading technical anti-graffiti films we are able to offer a warranty of up to 7 years, guaranteeing a solid return on investment.

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