DEADLY GAME OF TAG – Saturday March 9 2013

– Brazen graffiti gangs are holding up commuters by forcing trains to stop so they can get their spray-can kicks.
The alarming trend – dubbed “in runnings”, as the incidents occur when the trains are in service – involves vandals tripping red lights, bringing trains to a halt and hiving them the opportunity to spray-paint.
Metro statistics seen by the Herald Sun – after six weeks of trying to obtain them – reveal there were 518 “in runnings” last year and 531 in 2011 – up from 347 in 2010.
Almost 100 have been recorded so far this year, an indication that the craze is growing.
Police sources said it was only a matter of time before someone would be killed. “This graffiti isn’t about art. It’s about causing maximum damage and inconvenience to as many people as possible,” a source said.
Sometimes drivers discover the sabotaged signals, the murals, or even catch vandals in the act, while investigating their hold- up.
Vandals also target known locations where trains stop for signals, and isolated end-of-line platforms. Police sources said “in runnings” gave vandals the added kick of seeing their murals and tags travelling around the network until he train was cleaned – and a chance to photograph them and post the images online.
They said the trend emerged after Metro staff and police increased CCTVs and patrols at sidings, forcing vandals to look for new alternatives.
In one of the most brazen incidents, a graffiti gang wearing balaclavas pulled an emergency handle to stop a Glen Waverley train at Heyington last year. They threatened the driver when he went to investigate.
Transit CIU Senior Sergeant Brian Montgomery said “in runnings” wee enormously dangerous as vandals were on live tracks where trains ran both ways.
A specialist transit graffiti team is using intelligence to target hot spots and known offenders, who face up to 10 years’ jail.
Metro spokeswoman Larisa Tait said the operator spent $913,000 a year removing graffiti from trains. “This practice is not only dangerous, it is costly and it’s disrupts the travel for thousands of out customers,” she said – Amelia Harris


About Jumpin' Jack Cash

Deep connections are the most important aspect of my existence. I don’t care if people don’t know what they want. I love books. I’m cynical of love stories, although I’m romantic. I adore gardens. I like women who challenge me. I love the rain as an excuse to stay inside and dream. I'm furiously impatient. If I ask you a question best to tell me the truth as I'm likely to already know the answer. I'm a carnivore. I continuously underestimate the magic of fresh flowers in my home. I love warm rain in the summer. My mood elevates to epic proportions when the sun shines. Tell me not to do something and I'll do it twice and take photos. Running is my antidepressant. I loathe lies. I rarely forgive a lie. Loyalty and honesty are my most noble virtues, and I value them more than anything in other people. I love to love, and am able to fall in love very quickly, although it's only ever happened once. I understood myself and fixed myself only after destroying myself. My greatest excitement comes from deliberately getting lost in foreign cities. I can be extremely loud and frighteningly silent. I hate insinuations. I love storms. Justice for all. I'm a proud man, but welcome the influence of the feminine soul. I have two sisters. I’m a dreamer. I’m a deep thinker. Don’t deal with guilt trips or drama that well. I'm extremely stubborn and persistent. I'm brilliant at keeping secrets. I love driving. I become absolutely and completely lost while watching a burning fire. When the toast pops from the toaster I’m never ready and shit myself. I play the guitar, but require much improvement. Solitude and warmth of the sun are perfect together. I’ve been married once and now divorced. I’m a music junkie. Chocolate mousse is the shit. I curse too much. I find it difficult to make friends. I spent four years as a firefighter. I’ve run my own company since 1991. Bright lights, big cities. I’ve been an executive producer of a feature film. Some people don’t care, and that’s the biggest let-down of the human race. There are cures and solutions for many evils, but no remedy for the worst of them all - the apathy of human beings. The sound of the Italian language being spoken is as good as my favourite music. I hate corrupt cops. I relentlessly and passionately pursue anybody and anything that sets my soul on fire. I'm a dog lover, and all my dogs are considered family members. I have an obsession with photography. I have some close friends who are household names, but shall always remain anonymous. I’m crazy but not lazy. Losing a soulmate has hurt me badly. My two young sons are the nucleus of my universe. I love airports. I love freedom. If you are dishonest or disloyal, I can erase you from my life and memory immediately and permanently. I yearn to explore, dream about and discover as many friendships, deep connections and places, one possibly can in a lifetime.
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