September 12, 2018

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The rising role of IT in physical access control

CASH-IN-TRANSIT THREAT

Parking restrictions are putting cash-in-transit couriers in harm’s way, says BSIA

Image: G4S

Parking restrictions and pedestrianisation are exposing cash-in-transit couriers to greater risk of violent attacks, the British Security Industry Association (BSIA) has said.

There have been more than 100 violent attacks involving weapons on CViT crews so far in 2018. In some cases couriers and members of the public were seriously injured.

The BSIA says that vehicle traffic and access restrictions proposed for Rochdale town centre could put couriers in the (CViT) industry, as well as the general public, at serious risk of harm.

Proposed by Rochdale Council and the Highways Department, the restrictions will mean CViT firms can no longer park close to their customers. Couriers will therefore need to travel greater distances on foot, increasing the risk of ambush by criminal gangs.

“Delivering cash is a dangerous job and the riskiest part is the time that our crews spend outside, carrying cash from the customer to our secure vehicles,” said Gareth Skinner, head of operational risk at G4S.

“The further away a vehicle is parked the greater the risk.” Gareth Skinner, head of operational risk, G4S

“We try to reduce the risks to our crew, customers and the general public by parking as close as possible to the customer’s premises so our crews only ever have to walk a short distance. The further away a vehicle is parked the greater the risk.

“Locating appropriate and safe parking to enable a short and suitable walking route, under CCTV, avoiding steps and stairs, blind spots and hiding places for would-be attackers to a customer’s premises proves very problematic. It is critical that all stakeholders understand and take account of the risks in any decisions they make that impact on their ability for safe and appropriate access to parking.”

Consultation

The BSIA is urging local councils and other stakeholders to launch a consultation over the issue. The association wants agreement on safe, proportionate access and parking to help couriers carry out their jobs safely.

“Our members responsible for the safe delivery of cash play a major role in the mechanics of a vibrant high street, which in many parts of the United Kingdom are already suffering from the effects of online shopping and business rates,” said BSIA CEO James Kelly. “Access to cash continues to be a vital part of daily life, and ensuring there is enough in circulation is the role of CViT companies to ensure that a whole range of businesses have access to cash readily so that they can operate smoothly.”

“It is essential that these companies are able to carry out this critical operation without any risk to their staff or the public at large, and therefore we urge Rochdale Council and the relevant stakeholders to work together in order to address the concerns of the industry and to redress this issue.”

Sarah Staff, head of  SaferCash, an intelligence-sharing collaboration between police and the CViT industry, said: “There is a perceived illusion that a CViT attack is a victimless crime. CViT attacks often involve serious injuries to retail staff, customers and CviT crews. These crimes have a real impact on staff and local communities, and in many cases untold costs to both people’s lives, property and the industry”

“A fully collaborative and partnership approach is critical to tackling this kind of criminality. The industry, local councils and businesses and government agencies need to recognise the unique and critical nature and purpose of delivering and collecting cash, and we must demonstrate best practice and contribute towards the safety of CViT crews and the public to eliminate this type of criminality.”

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