Unsung Heroes 2010 - Tony Dallison

Tony DallisonTony has spent four years leading the Safer Travel strategy for National Express and has consistently pushed the boundaries of partnership working to deliver safer bus journeys in the West Midlands and Dundee. His role covers all elements of passenger and driver safety within National Express Group’s bus operations and he has a truly commendable dedication and commitment to cutting bus crime.

Tony works tirelessly to support the nine bus depots based in the West Midlands and the Dundee bus operation. He is constantly on hand to support garage managers with a wide range of challenging and difficult issues ranging from driver/ passenger assaults to community outreach work. Tony has an incredibly positive outlook on all the issues that arise throughout the course of the day - a trait which has earned him the respect of the partner organisations National Express works with.

He works closely with the Police and CCTV operatives within each of the garages to ensure that when an incident occurs footage is quickly extracted. Tony's work has led to the detection and prosecution of many hundreds of bus offenders and this commitment also extends beyond the workplace as he also volunteers as a special constable.

Tony's outstanding contributions to transport include:

  • Forming the first partnership between a bus operator and a local authority to actively identify and prosecute bus smokers. To date over 60 bus smokers have been prosecuted and partnerships are now in place with Birmingham, Coventry and Solihull Councils.
  • Performing presentations to over 18,000 schoolchildren in the West Midlands annually. These events have fostered close working relationships between National Express and schools/ colleges
  • helping to reduce anti social behaviour on the bus network.
  • playing a major role in the 54.4% drop in bus related crime within the West Midlands over the past four years.
  • introducing an innovative 'code of conduct' with schoolchildren across the region. Pupils, their parents and teachers sign the code outlining what is acceptable behaviour on the bus. The scheme is now used by over 50 schools in the West Midlands. lf a child breaks the code their parents are invited to the school to view the onboard CCTV of the incident. This has proved a highly successful deterrent to bad behaviour.
  • implementing CCTV technology which can beam live images from National Express buses to handheld screens in nearby police cars. This is the first time this technology has been used outside London and lets police monitor vehicles and intervene when an offence occurs.
  • playing a crucial role in establishing the 'See something, say something' text line in the West Midlands. This text service allows bus passengers to report acts of vandalism and anti social behaviour instantly to National Express. The data is shared with the police who ensure every person receives a follow up phone call to reassure them that action will be taken.

ln 2006 Tony was part of the team from National Express Bus Division that picked up the CILT Annual Award for Excellence for Safety from HRH The Princess Royal.

Tony is a family man and has seven children with his wife Sue. He was a bus driver for over ten years before progressing to become an inspector and Safer Travel Manager in 2006. His work is leading the industry and has repeatedly attracted media attention for its cutting edge attitude to combating bus crime. Tony has represented National Express on a host of TV programmes about bus crime including BBC programmes 'lnside Out' in January 2009 and Crimewatch Roadshow in June 2010.

Aside from preventing crime and anti social behaviour on the bus, Tony also works closely with vulnerable bus users. He regularly meets with Autism West Midlands, Age Concern and charities which support blind and deaf bus users. He is committed to ensuring that bus travel is accessible for everyone in the region. He has put special travel plans and garage visits in place for vulnerable travellers. These additional steps have encouraged many of them to venture onto public transport for the first time.

The framework for partnership working Tony has put in place will carry the Safer Travel Partnership forward in the West Midlands for many years to come. He has worked relentlessly to forge relationships with local authorities, schools, charities and the police to build a network that is able to detect and respond to bus crime quickly and effectively.

Phil Bateman, CPT West Midlands Regional Manager, said: "The CPT West Midlands Region believes that it is individuals like Tony Dallison, working within our member bus companies that gives great hope in the future for the delivery of better, safer, and more innovative customer programmes. lt is individuals and public transport operators working together with the  community and other agencies that will ultimately encourage more sections of our community back on to public transport."


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