Dutch NS employees want more power to tackle increasing violence on trains

Train personnel in the Netherlands have had a rough year. With increasing violence at stations and on trains, the NS wants extra powers for its Safety & Service employees.

In 2021, NS staff reported nearly 750 incidents that involved aggression. In the years before that, there were 661 (2020) and 678 (2019), reports RTL Nieuws.

The Dutch railway operator currently has around 700 Safety & Service employees with special authority — and they had to be called into action more than three million times last year! 🤯

Coronavirus leads to more agitation

“We see that some travellers have a short fuse during coronavirus times, which is a trend we also see reflected more widely in society,” says NS board member Eleco van Asch.

No less than 186 NS employees were injured because they had to get involved with aggressive travellers. In 87% of those cases, these were, luckily, “just” minor injuries.

However, it’s not just the NS staff who are affected by the growing violence. Incidents reported by passengers rose by 20% to a total of 2,300 in 2021. 😳

Identity verification

The NS is calling on the Dutch Ministry of Justice and Security to give its specially trained employees extra powers. Specifically, that they’re allowed to check someone’s identity.

“The sooner you know who you have in front of you, the less quickly a situation will get out of hand,” states the railway operator.

Extra powers would also allow the employees to act on international intercities such as those between Amsterdam and Brussels.

What do you think of the NS employees having more powers? Let us know in the comments!

Image: [email protected]/Depositphotos

Jana Vondráčková 🇨🇿
Jana Vondráčková 🇨🇿
Originally from the Czech Republic, Jana moved to the Netherlands for her studies. She fell in love with the local biking culture, and you’ll see her drifting through the streets of Rotterdam on her pink bike even in the worst possible weather (think rain, snow, hail, or all three). Besides advocating for Rotterdam as the best Dutch city, she likes to wander around with a camera in her hand.


  1. Violence has no room in any public setting, nor domestic ones either. Violence has no room wherever, it should be dealt with as soon as it happens! Yes, NS employees should have powers to stop violence at once, to protect themselves, the agressor and most importantly the other patrons!


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