There are frequent incidents of Taiwan Railways passengers attacking train conductors, so Taiwan Railways Administration has decided to try out equipping train conductors with self-defense sprays. However, some train conductors are afraid to use them as the law does not give them enforcement power. The TRA says it will try this out for two months and then decide whether to continue.
The train stops at the platform, and the train conductor alights and uses a walkie-talkie to communicate with station personnel while assisting passengers. In recent months, there have been several incidents of passengers attacking train conductors for no reason. Taiwan Railways Administration has therefore decided to try out equipping conductors with self-defense sprays. However, not many conductors are using them in reality.
I didn't bring it today, although they did give it to us. I saw that it was handed out. (I heard that some people are afraid to take it. Are you worried about law enforcement issues?) More or less.
Some train conductors said they worry that they lack law enforcement power under the law, and using these sprays may result in disputes. Many are therefore taking a wait and see approach. The TRA says so far it has distributed 100 sprays for conductors on Keelung and Taipei trains, and the conductors are free to use them as they see appropriate. It also organized a seminar to explain when to use the spray.
If passengers remain irrational even after attempts are made to communicate, or if there is any disorderly behavior, then train conductors can use this anti-attack spray.
The pilot program will last two months. After that, the TRA will assess the effectiveness before deciding whether to expand the program. The Railway Police Bureau, which frequently uses self-defense sprays, says the cylindrical form spray issued by the TRA needs to be used at a distance. This means that train conductors will need to back up a few steps to respond to an attack by irrational passengers.
If today you come across a perpetrator with a lethal weapon, we recommend that conductors first maintain a safe distance and then try using the self-defense spray. It should not be used at a short distance.
The Railway Police Bureau adds the spray will temporarily take away vision and cause the heartrate to accelerate. Therefore, it should not be used on the elderly, disabled, pregnant women, and children. In past cases where railway police officers used such sprays at stations to subdue attackers, the attackers were immediately sent to a hospital.