Advice for adults
Children can be at risk on transport for a variety of reasons. It’s important for everyone to know what to look out for.
Signs to spot:
- Behaviour that seems out of place, furtive, scared or emotional, even suicidal
- Appearance that looks unkempt or shows injuries and signs of self-harm
- Where young people aren’t dressed appropriately for their age or for the weather
- Relationships between adults and children that just don’t seem right
- Exchanges that are aggressive or violent
- Signs of alcohol or drug misuse
- Children alone during the school day or late at night
Are you worried about your own child?
Around a third of the children that come to the attention of British Transport Police (BTP) have run away from home or care.
If you feel a child, you know may head onto the rail network when missing or having a crisis you can report your concerns to BTP by calling them on 0800 40 50 40, or text them on 61016. In an emergency, always call 999.
Are you worried about your child for another reason or just need someone to talk to? You can get information and advice from these free helplines:
A helpline for emotional support, talk any time you like, about whatever’s getting to you. Call the helpline 116123 email firstname.lastname@example.org, write or visit a branch.
A confidential and free helpline service. Call 0808 800 2222 for information, advice, guidance, and support on any aspect of parenting and family life. Open Mon-Fri 9am–9pm, and Sat-Sun 10am-3pm.
NSPCC Adult Helpline
For adults who are worried about a child, who want advice, or who are seeking information. Call 0808 800 5000 or visit their website using the link below.
Information about different types of mental health problems and where to get help. Call 0300 123 3393, Mon-Fri, 9am-6pm.
Whether you are worrying about someone you think is missing, or feel there is a risk of them going missing, these guidance pages can help you.
"I would most definitely recommend Railway Children, and already have to another mum that I know has been having difficulty. Their support has been what has kept me sane in a very difficult time, they listen without judgement, are not pushy and let you do things at your own pace, because sometimes it can and does feel like you’re caught up in a tornado with lots of people involved and you don’t know where you’re up to."
Quote from a mum supported by Railway Children.